Why Should You Play Beat Saber VR?

Have you ever put on some music and just relaxed, doing nothing as you listened to your favourite songs on repeat? If so, you will love Beat Saber VR, atleast, this is one of the reasons why I became so attached and lost a week of my life to it.

Reasons To Play Beat Saber VR

Beat Saber is a VR game, bought by oculus, falling under the category of ‘rhythm games’. The main objective is to hit the notes coming at you and get the best score possible. To say that rhythm games aren’t my thing, Beat Saber VR compared to other similar games like guitar hero, it’s much more for for these reasons:

Music Packs

Beat Saber, the game itself, has managed to get licenses from popular artists like; BTS, Imagine Dragons and Linkin Park and have music packs dedicated to these artists. If you like them, you will be able to play an official version within the game. Furthermore, if you are looking at listening to new songs, Beat Saber offers many of their own songs for you to slice notes to.

Custom Songs

My personal favourite part about this amazing beat game is being able to upload custom songs to beat saber. Hitting notes on beat to your favourite artists is truly a great and addictive feeling, you get swallowed by the music, it’s amazing.

New Player Friendly

Fast paced songs are more difficult as there are more notes for you to hit, but the great part about Beat Saber is that it is very new player and ‘average’ player friendly. They offer multiple difficulties ranging from; easy, normal, hard, expert and expert + allowing you to get used to the game.

A tip for you new players I’ve found to work like a treat is to use more wrist movements than arm movements, it’s easier to hit notes that spread far out to the next.

Move To The Beat

Like I said at the beginning of this article, instead of sitting or laying and listening to music, you can get your body into your favourite songs by dancing to the beat and hitting the notes. Combined this with the custom song idea, you can search for your own songs on the ‘BeastSaber’ website where people from the community upload their maps of songs.

Furthermore, if your song is not listed, you can auto generate the map by using BeatSage which uses AI technology to create rhythms from the song you uploaded. Whilst it’s not perfect, it’s an amazing feeling to slice notes to your personal favourite songs.

Challenges

If you begin to get bored of the standard slicing block routine (you would be crazy to), Beat Saber offers many challenges for you to master your favourite songs on the hardest (or fun) difficulty.

Availability

Beat Saber is available anywhere for you to purchase and start dancing to. Beat Saber is on Steam, Oculus store and Playstation VR, and further is available on the oculus quest for all of you wireless players out there.

I hope you enjoyed this detailed article and I hope it gave you a good reason to at least try Beat Saber VR for yourself. Even if you are unsure, try it, that’s what I did and I fell in love and became addicted.

Written By: Max Lang-Orsini

Twitch Live Streaming For Dummies – Max Lang-Orsini

Twitch Live Streaming For Dummies

You’ve most likely clicked on this article to learn how to stream professionally, and that is exactly the right reason you should be here for. Live streaming on Twitch, or on any other streaming platform takes a lot of energy and work, much more than you may believe. So, how do these popular streamers do it and how can you get your hands on Twitch Affiliate with consistent returning viewers?

Video Game Broadcasting For Beginners

In this article, I, Max Lang-Orsini, will break down the important points to help you become a consistently ‘good’ streamer. We will focus on some nerdy algorithm facts whilst also giving you advice for your broadcasts. But first, how do you begin and what’s the best software to use for your live streaming endeavours?

Live Streaming Software

Picking the right live streaming software to start streaming may seem daunting at first, or easy from what you’ve heard. There are a fair few streaming softwares that are worth a mention, but OBS Studio is the most obvious choice. Compared to other softwares, Open Broadcaster Software (OBS) is free and is placed at a high standard amongst many other streamers.

What makes OBS great is its user friendly navigation, as well as it’s optimised capability to encode streams effectively and efficiently. Those top twitch streamers you watch are more than likely using OBS (OBS Studio to be specific), and understandably so.

Remember that you will need a capture card to stream from your console to your computer to Twitch.

Even I would recommend OBS, however, if you believe it’s not for you, here are some other great broadcasting softwares that deserve that mention;

Decast Live Streaming

VidBlasterX

XSplit

The Basic Setup

First, before streaming, you will need to follow some tutorials on building your stream up from the ground. If you know some good editors or artists, commissions are an extra you can do to help improve the quality of your stream, remember, you’re not alone!

Follow these YouTube tutorials to make sure you have the correct settings for your broadcast, no one wants to watch 5fps gameplay. Speaking of people watching, interact with Twitch chat as much as possible, you’d be surprised at the amount of people that don’t talk to the viewers in their stream. Engagement and interactivity is what drives twitch streams, so engage with the viewers the best you can!

Furthermore, setup hotkeys to mute your microphone and headphones and add the ‘noise suppression’ effect. This will help to reduce background noise and the hotkeys can be used to prevent audio you don’t want being broadcasted live.

Keeping Viewers Engaged

Remember that you are here to stream and have fun, not gawk over the numbers. These numbers you keep looking at can prove to be a very distracting factor. I would recommend to hide the viewer count number, as seeing low or less than usual can be very demotivating.

To keep viewers retention, engagement is your best way of doing so, remember that returning viewers are better than unique viewers! You want people to come back to your stream, not watch once and never again, interacting with your chat is key to keep that retention for as long as possible.

Communicating and talking a lot is also important, if you notice things becoming silent, start a conversation about a topic that the viewers may be interested in, or further, tell a story. Streamers prepare their streams throughout the day and some write notes on conversation topics they think of, this is a great improvisation technique.

If you can get them to follow you on your other social media platforms, that would be a great outcome. Posting when you’re about to be live or any other notices on streaming updates 

Be Yourself

As silly as this sounds, try your best to be yourself and avoid putting on a persona, some can see through this. On top of this, be as positive as you can, as well, it’s a known fact that humans drift away from negativity, so try your best even on days you don’t feel 100%.

For that matter, if you don’t feel like you have the energy to stream, do not worry, it’s better to have no stream than a bad stream. Chances are, those viewers will come back another day when that bad stream might have driven them away from your twitch account.

The Algorithm Tips

Once you’ve got all this, it’s a matter of finding your audience and your audience finding you. However, there are workarounds to help you get these viewers more effectively.

Finding the right categories for your interests and audience is difficult when put together. Starting out will be you finding your footing. Focus on games that are big but are not oversaturated with professional players or the big named streamers, i.e Valorant and CS:GO.

Games like Sea Of Thieves or Stardew Valley are popular games without it being oversaturated. Finding these games that suit you too is that hardest point, but once again, find your footing and where you stand on streaming games.

However, if you play games that you know you can be good at, you may find viewers tuning in to watch your skill. I noticed that on Call Of Duty: Cold War Zombies, most of the higher up streamers are on the high 100 rounds, so if you know you can get to that, do so and put it in your title!

Furthermore, your title is the first impression a viewer gets of your stream, so making them want to click will be important. Puns are a great way of doing so, especially if you give off a ‘funny’ atmosphere. It’s also worth mentioning that only the first 36 characters will be shown before it gets cut off, so make the first 36 characters count!

A huge tip for much smaller streamers is the ‘5 viewer rule’. For those that don’t know, when you have 5 viewers, your chances of discoverability are much higher because you get pushed much higher in the category. This leads onto my next point;

Friends & Family

As much as it may be embarrassing to show your friends and / or family you playing games online, having them simply ‘lurk’ within the stream, or interact every now and then helps your viewer count. Having those friends tune in to help build the numbers will furthermore help your discoverability, and if they talk in your chat, it’s extra conversation starters, it comes full circle.

These are the few tips for live streaming beginners I believe to be the most helpful, especially when I started out. Remember that you do not need a separate streaming PC or even a green screen, let alone a camera, being yourself is why your viewers will keep returning (obviously if it’s watchable).

Please share if you found this helpful and reply with your input, it’s always interesting to read up on other people’s experience.

Written By: Max Lang-Orsini

2020 | A Great Year For Technology & Gaming – Max Lang-Orsini

2020 may not have been the greatest year for many, but despite the restrictions humanity has gone through like; social distancing, working from home, isolating etc, we have managed to pull off arguably one of the most productive years for technology and gaming.

In this article, I will dive deep into the top discussions of the year, the Playstation 5, Xbox Series X, Nvidia RTX & AMD’s Radeon and what this means for gaming.

Gaming Just Got a Whole Lot Better

With the launch of all this new tech, there is no arguing that gaming just got ten times better than it was before. From Augmented Reality to Virtual Reality, to extreme realistic real time Ray Tracing, there is no surprise that there is this much hype around it all.

Nvidia’s New RTX

Nvidia’s New RTX Series
Nvidia’s RTX 30 Series

For the PC gaming specialists out there, seeing the release of the new Nvidia graphics card series has got the buzz going. The statistics for the card outweighs their previous generations by a huge margin, and what makes it even better, it’s so much cheaper!

Nvidia’s New RTX Series Performance Chart
Nvidia RTX 30 Series Comparison To Previous Series

Looking at the statistics, it’s no surprise there is this much talk about it. The best card beforehand was the 2080Ti which went for over $1,000, but for half the price, you can get DOUBLE the speed.

The RTX 3070 compares with the previous generations best for half of it’s price, let alone the 3080 & 90’s frame rate and resolution performance.

AMD’s New Radeon

AMD’s New Radeon
AMD Radeon

Following up after the Nvidia RTX, AMD’s big comeback sparked much hype at the possibility of Nvidia having competition again. The statistics of the Radeon blew the internet into oblivion when they saw the AMD could beat Nvidia.

AMD Radeon Big Navi Performance Chart
AMD’s Radeon RX 6900 XT Vs Nvidia’s RTX 3090

Looking at this graph is truly phenomenal. AMD finally can compete with Nvidia on the big stage and in some games actually beat them in performance. The only downside to AMD is they don’t have as full proof ray tracing as nvidia does, but if you just game, AMD, Team Red is the way to go.

AMD’s New Ryzen Zen 3

AMD’s New Ryzen Zen 3 5000 Series
AMD Ryzen 5000 Generation Series

On top of all of this for the PC gamers, they get more with AMD’s new 5th generation Ryzen CPUs for a reasonable price. AMD without question had no competition with Intel this launch and with the performance it delivers combined with either the RTX or Radeon, you can have a gaming rig no one would have ever thought would have existed.

AMD Ryzen 5000 Series Performance Chart
AMD’s Ryzen 5000 Generation Series vs Intel

As you can see by the graph above, the 5000 series demolishes intel on all versions.

Xbox Series

Xbox Series X
Xbox Series

Competing with Playstation, the fridge Xbox Series X closely compared to the PS5 gaming console in specifications. Personally speaking, I would say go for the console you prefer, or the console with the best video gaming exclusives.

Playstation 5

Playstation 5
PlayStation 5

The Playstation 5, arguably out of all of those above has the biggest popularity. Out of all of them, the PS5 is something I cannot escape a day without hearing how good this product is. I have to mention that the look of the PS5 is incredible, it’s just a shame you struggle to get one.

The Playstation 5 & Xbox Series X brings console gaming to another level, providing high quality gameplay that now is slowly reaching PC standards of potential quality.

PS5 & Xbox Series Specifications Side By Side
PS5 V Xbox Series X

Since I could not find any statistics out there on comparing the two consoles and comparing them to the newly constructed graphics cards, here are the specifications for those nerds out there.

The Stock Problem

Regardless of how good the year was for technology and gaming and regardless of how good performance wise the products are, the fact of the matter is that the COVID-19 Coronavirus Pandemic has really taken a toll on the stock.

At first, people criticised Nvidia for rushing the launch of their cards until AMD, PS5 and Xbox launched theres. This is proof that the pandemic has taken a huge hit on the production of these consoles and graphics cards.

You can also argue the demand for this is something that no one has ever seen before. Scan mentioned that on the release days of the consoles or cards they saw over 5 times their standard website traffic rate.

Many are having to Pre-Order, (which is never a good sign as you never know when you will get it) as no one knows when it will properly stock, leading to many angry customers.

For those out there trying their hardest to get their hands on a new card or console, just remember to not give in to the scalpers and buy someone reselling it overpriced. Stick with it and follow trackers online so you get alerted the moment they restock. It’ll be awhile before they have stock for the demand, but staying with it is the hardest part.

Good luck on your future shopping endeavours – Max Lang-Orsini

How Did ‘Among Us’ Become So Popular? – Max Lang-Orsini

To think that a simple indie game exploded in popularity and became one of the most popular games of all time is hard, but the game Among Us managed it. I had to call this emergency meeting as I saw (according to Steamcharts,) 438,524 players in September 2020 all playing concurrently, competing with the top games like Dota 2 and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (which is pretty sus).

What Caused Among Us To Be Popular?

Released in June 2018, the game only saw a couple of hundred to a thousand players playing at one time, which sounds like a lot, but compared to your competitors is nothing. It wasn’t until the end of August 2020 when it really began to rise in popularity. In this article, we will target the points that caused this uprising for this video game.

Streamers

Arguably, big twitch streamers began streaming the game which is the biggest argument for the popularity boom. It all makes sense, your favourite streamer played the game, you wanted to play the game, it’s basically free promotion. On top of that, streamers and content creators began playing together and many collaborations that viewers finally wanted happened (like KSI & PewDiePie).

Viewer numbers on Twitch can be misleading to determine a game’s true popularity, a good example is Valorant and its beta drops, but Among Us is different. With Among Us, you can tell that everyone watching is genuine.

COVID-19

Another big point to why so many players are playing this game right now is COVID-19, the lockdowns and isolation. You see, when people are having to isolate or be locked down, many turn to gaming as a pass time and because so many people are doing so, it doesn’t appear to be as difficult to get a group of players or friends to have a laugh.

Among Us has become a hilarious option to escape from the year that is 2020.

Easy To Learn, Easy To Play

For a third reason on the Among Us’ popularity boom has to be the gameplay. I don’t have to mention the simplistic style of the game that any age can play, but the core mechanics of the game have purpose.

As a ‘Crewmate’, you have to complete tasks, causing you to potentially split away from the group and allowing the impostor to make a move. The tasks for crewmates are very simple, and within a game or two on either side, you already understand the basics for the mechanics.

As an ‘Impostor’, your job is to kill your fellow crewmates, get away with it and outnumber them before they can complete their tasks. You are able to vent in areas around the map to help navigate quickly.

Mobile Game

Something that makes the game have a huge audience and ties to a previous point is the fact that you can play on mobile, for free! Mobile Among Us is free and can play cross platform with PC, meaning you can play with friends just about anywhere. This is a great addition for multiplayer gaming

Furthermore, it increases the reach for Among Us even more by being one of the top games on the Google Play Store and IOS App Store. So in reality, there are more than 440,000 players playing at once!

Among Us has become a titan in today’s gaming, proving no matter the basicness of your game, you can still conquer the top games like Dota and CS:GO.

Dead By Daylight | A Survivor Review

Dead By Daylight is an unforgettable gaming experience full of thrills, torment and laughter as you evade against the killer to escape. The concept of Dead By Daylight is like no other, and for so long people wanted to translate this into an actual game and well, it happened.

Dead By Daylight Survivor

Over recent decades, online gaming has advanced tremendously. Not only in its graphical quality but the creative ideas are truly coming to light, Dead By Daylight is a spectacle of this.

In Dead By Daylight, you can play as a survivor, but you can also play as the killer. In this article, however, we will focus on the survivor side but if you wish, you can read the killer version I created.

Trivia

This great game was published by Behaviour Interactive on Steam in the June of 2016. Shortly after, Dead By Daylight gained a significant following with many live streamers and content creators making content on this fantastic horror game. It was later ported to Xbox and PlayStation in 2017 following it’s instant success.

Dead By Daylight is a multiplayer game (that sadly has no voice chat) where there are 4 survivors and 1 killer. It’s a grindy like game as you progress up the levels, spending your hard earned bloodpoints (points by playing) to level up characters for better perks, items, add-ons and offerings.

Your Job As a Survivor

Dead By Daylight Generator Screenshot

Your main job in Dead By Daylight as a survivor is to complete 5 generators to power the exit gates, in which you can open once powered and escape. Sounds easy, but when there is a killer on the loose, the difficulty ceiling does get higher. The maps in the game vary in size, tho typically are big with many places to hide, one of the common places are lockers. Lockers look like an obvious hiding spot, but because it looks so obvious, who would use them?

To know where the killer is, you can listen to the ‘Terror Radius’ to determine how close they are. The terror radius is a heartbeat that progressively gets more and more intense the closer he is, this is a good sign to get out of there.

When the killer enters a chase with you, a good way to tell which way he is facing is by looking at the red light in front of him. Good killers will know this and if they know you can’t see them, they will turn around as they come round the corner, giving you less time to react.

Perks, Items, Add-Ons

To help you survive, the game has various ways you can use as aid. These perks, Items and add-ons for the items vary, so when you bring them into the trial, make sure you have a strategy.

Perks

To start with perks, I will mention the ‘meta’ perks that everyone finds to be the most strong and effective. For new players, you must level up a survivor to levels 30, 35 and 40 to unlock all of that character’s unique perks. To see which perks you can get from characters, read the ‘character info’ by pressing F1 on PC or you can read about teachable perks.

I find the combo ‘Deliverance’ and ‘Decisive Strike’ a good combination. Deliverance means you can instantly escape off your first hook if you have previously made a safe save on another teammate. To combine this, Decisive Strike allows you to get off the killers’ shoulder if he picks you up within a minute of unhooking yourself, giving you a quick get away.

Items

Every survivor has the same items, these items are; medkits, toolboxes, flashlights, maps and keys. Most are obviously by their name, but flashlights, maps and keys work differently to how you would expect.

Flashlights

Flashlights are not a tool to help you see, rather they can shine in the killers’ eyes to blind them. It takes a few seconds to have an effect, so I wouldn’t recommend doing this when you’re mid chase.

Maps

Maps are similar to how you would expect. When in use, the map reveals the aura of generators, or, if you are using a rainbow map, almost everything interactable.

Keys

Keys are used to open ‘Black Locks’. For those who do not know what this means, it’s referring to the ‘hatch’ that spawns randomly in the trial opening up a free escape.

Add-Ons

For the items above, you can apply add-ons to increase the duration, or increase the amount of charges your item has. Some can apply unique effects, such as the toolbox’s brand new part. This part allows you to complete 25% of a generator if you land the skill checks correctly.

The Survivor List

Before we dig in, it’s important you know that it does not matter much which survivor you play. Some injured survivors are louder than others, but that is only the real difference and is not significant, so here are my favourite survivors.

Laurie Strode | Determined Survivor

Laurie Strode | Determined Survivor

The first licensed survivor to be added to Dead By Daylight was Laurie Strode. Laurie Strode is the main character from the classic horror movie, Halloween with the inclusion of Michael Myers.

Her teachable perks are; Sole Survivor, Object of Obsession and Decisive Strike. Click each named perk to read more about how it functions.

Yui Kimura | Hardened StreetracerYui Kimura | Hardened Streetracer

Yui Kimura is a fairly recent survivor that was added to Dead By Daylight, however, a bit of bias may be on her side because of how great her outfits are. Yui Kimura is a Japanese motorbike racer who is The Oni’s survivor opposition.

Her teachable perks are; Lucky Break, Any Means Necessary and Breakout.

Quentin Smith | Resolute DreamwalkerQuentin Smith | Resolute Dreamwalker

Quentin Smith was the survivor version of the ‘Nightmare On Elm Street’ DLC. This determined survivor helps lead his team survive through thick and thin.
His teachable perks are; Wake Up!, Pharmacy and Vigil.

Dead By Daylight | A Killer Review

Everyone has heard of Dead By Daylight by now, it’s definitely earnt its mainstream fame, rightfully so. The concept of Dead By Daylight sounds like one of those games that will never get made, but now has its own title with its thrilling gameplay!

Dead By Daylight Killer

Dead By Daylight has two sides, the survivor side and the killer side. In this article, we will primarily focus on the killer side, but if you wish to read the survivor side instead, go ahead.

Trivia

The horror game, Dead By Daylight, was published by Behaviour Interactive as a multiplayer game on Steam in June of 2016. With its instant success and climbing followers, it was later ported to Xbox and Playstation in 2017.

This game was perfect for streamers and content creators as it was something you could stream and record with ease, but was something completely new that the gaming industry has never seen before, thus helping its follower count climb.

Your Job As a Killer

Dead By Daylight Screenshot

In Dead By Daylight as a killer, your main goal is to prevent the survivors from repairing generators and, well, kill them. Your job is to force the survivor into the ‘dying state’, pick them up, and place them on meat hooks. Sounds gruesome, but you have a tremendous amount to worry about as the killer.

As a killer, you have a ‘Terror Radius’, which to the survivors will be a heartbeat, and that heartbeat beats faster the closer the killer is. This way the survivors will know you are on your way…

Something that does make the killer easier is the fact that survivors will leave a trail (it looks like a load of red scratches) when they run. The tracks can get messy, especially when there’s a lot so in some instances can be your enemy by leading you to confusion.

Perks & Add-Ons

Now, you’re not technically on your own as you can have perks and small add-ons to help you catch those pesky survivors. These perks can range from seeing the outline of the survivors, or causing the skill checks to be harder for the survivor to land.

Some perks you can combine with others, for example, one of my favourite perks to using together is ‘Distressing’ and ‘Unnerving Presence’. ‘Distressing’ makes your terror radius huge whilst ‘Unnerving Presence’ causes skill checks to be incredibly small and appear more often.

As the killer, you are in a first person perspective whilst the survivors have a 3rd person perspective, knowing this will hopefully allow you to use it to your advantage.

Each killer has their own perk types relating to their ability kit. Ah yes, there is more than one killer, there’s around ~21 killers in the game currently.

The Killer List

One of the elements that makes Dead By Daylight so good, especially in today’s age, is because of how many characters in the game there are. Remember that each killer has their own 3 unique perks, that’s 63 perks alone not counting the default ones.

In this section, I will cutdown and name a few that I particularly love playing whilst jumping to some nerdy parts of the character.

Michael Myers | The Shape

The classic killer was the first licensed killer to be ported in Dead By Daylight. I may be a bit biased since I love the Michael Myers horror movie series (excited for Halloween Kills) but his playstyle I find stands out from many killers. Your power is stalking, quite literally how he acts in the movies. You build this power up and go through 3 tiers.Michael Myers | The Shape

Tier 1 – Your lunge is small, but you have no terror radius, meaning you can sneak up on your prey. Tier 2 – you become more standard, however, you are unable to go back to tier 1. Tier 3 allows you to have a huge lunge and instantly down any survivor from healthy, but sadly this has a timer and you will drop back down to tier 2.

Evan Macmillan | The TrapperEvan Macmillan | The Trapper

Evan Macmillan was the first killer added to Dead By Daylight and was their very own original character. His power is unique and is one of the few killers in Dead By Daylight to be able to place things around the killing game.

He is able to place bear traps around the place with the hopes that some unsuspecting survivor will step right into it. This disables the survivor from doing anything until they are able to escape themself, or have help from another survivor.

Caleb Quinn | The DeathslingerCaleb Quinn | The Deathslinger

For ages in this game I’ve always wanted a character that could shoot some sort of weapons, the deathslinger finally gave us this. The Deathslinger, as you can imagine, is a killer that was born in the backlands of the american midwest and was attracted to the idea of a harpoon like gun to reel in his prey.

This killer is a little more mechanically skill based compared to other killers as not only do you have to predict the harpoon delay as it’s launched, you’ve got to focus on the survivors movements and the potential objects that could interfere with your shot, but I must say he is a blast to play.

Pyramid Head | The ExecutionerPyramid Head | The Executioner

For those who remember the classic horror games, Silent Hill will definitely strike a bell. There was huge demand for Pyramid Head, so the developers added him earlier this year to celebrate the 4 year anniversary. His unique gameplay and power makes him arguably one of the strongest killers in the game.

He is able to strike judgement on any survivors that get in the way of his path. Leaving torment trails around the place allows him to send survivors to a judgement tank somewhere random in the trial. On top of this, he has a secondary ability known as ‘The Punishment Of The Damned’ allowing him to launch a direct and straight strike in front of him, hitting any survivors in it.

Talbot Grimes | The BlightTalbot Grimes | The Blight

The Blight is the latest and 21st killer to be added to Dead By Daylight. This original character brings fast paced unique gameplay, arguably making him one of the top strongest killers at the moment.

His power allows you to charge forward, but you can only attack after you bump into an object. Imagine playing ping pong in a killing game, how insane does that sound? Nevertheless, the developers created this monstrosity bringing another form of ‘mind games’ in chases, easily one of the most fun killers to play. Whilst he takes a bit to get used to, good survivors who know how to counter his movements can make The Blight look silly.

Freddy Krueger | The NightmareFreddy Krueger | The Nightmare

Freddy Krueger, this killer has his own home within the classic killer neighbourhood. Pulling survivors into a dream allows Freddy to play his game whilst they are asleep. 

His main power is ‘dream snares’ that causes hands to come out the ground and grab to slow down any survivor that runs into this puddle.

If you wanted, you could switch this for fake pallets, playing on survivors’ feeling of safety. On top of this, he is able to teleport to any generator that is not completed, causing the gen to spew blood and himself coming out of the ground next to it. The most fun out of this killer is seeing every survivor scarper, only to be messed about in some way.

How Are Simplistic Games Running The Industry In 2020?

Gaming has advanced significantly over the past few decades. Playing games has become a common and cultural thing, however, the video game industry this year has been dominated by the simple type of online games.

How have the games ‘Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout’ and ‘Among Us’ managed to influence and gain control over the gaming market?

2020: The Simplistic Gaming Experience

We all play video games as a way to relax, but recently the emergence of the simple games have taken over, and with a fair few reasons. In this article, we will explain how these popular games exploded in popularity, and I’m sure this is obvious, but both games require an internet connection!

Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout

Released in February of this year, the game developers ‘Mediatonic’ published Fall Guys through Devolver Digital. Instantly, the game was a success, reminding players of how the basics of games at times can be a lot of fun. Fall guys is available on Windows and Playstation and are extremely popular for console gaming.

Building up to the release of Fall Guys, they caught a lot of their attention through social media. Their social media manager, @OliverAge24, has brought a lot of attention to their games by cracking jokes on the Fall Guys accounts making their followers laugh whilst interacting with them constantly.

Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout is sort of like a Mario party crossover, but instead vs in 60 players. There is a maximum of 5 rounds and only a certain number of people each round can qualify until one guy is the last one standing and wins. From winning, you earn a crown, and you can spend these crowns on cosmetics in the game, making winning worth it.

Among Us

An older game that has recently blown up was released all the way back in June of 2018. The Among Us game concept is all about you and your crewmates in space having to do day to day tasks, but, there is an impost among you. It’s your job to suss out and eliminate the imposter, or eliminate everyone if you are the imposter! It’s significantly more fun with friends, especially how it’s become ‘the norm’ to mute your mic at certain parts of the gameplay to be more immersed.

Arguably, Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout could have been an influence for the rise of Among Us since people began having an interest in the basic style games. To say the characters look fairly similar, this could also be another reason for finding out about the game.

If you didn’t know, you play Among Us through mobile gaming on IOS and Android.

Looking At The Statistics

To show you how big these games have gotten, let’s look at the statistics to get a better perspective.

If we look at steampowered statistics, Fall Guys had it’s an all-time peak in August of 172,000 concurrent players at once on Steam alone. It is estimated that Fall Guys have an active player count of 15.6 million players in their first-month launch.

Among us had an extremely low player count with an average of ~25 players until the boom this year. Its concurrent player peak hit 306,000 with an estimation of over 2.7 million players.

Typically it’s gaming companies that own the bigger and higher quality games, but as a fun fact, Among Us is run by a small team of 3 and they’ve been taken by surprise with this popularity boom! They’re working many hours to keep the servers stable and generally keeping the game a happy place, bless them.

Battle Royales

Almost everyone is aware of the battle royale craze that lasted from 2017 to 2020. Whilst battle royales are still fairly popular today, I would argue that the complexity of such a genre has exhausted games that require a lot of skill, like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Call Of Duty and Fortnite.

I’m not in any way downplaying the value of these skilful games as they take years to master, but in terms of the casual market, they seem to be looking for simpler games to pass the time. These types of games that have blown up prove to have been explicitly made to have a laugh with your friends, something that has over time slowly been forgotten about.

Live Streaming Services & Video Content Creation

One of the biggest reasons for the popularity boom is high-quality live streamers broadcasting this hilarious game to the world. This is no surprise, the majority of smaller games that gain popularity is through video creation content and gaming live streams.

Fan content is one of the leading carriers to the rise of both games. Both have managed to respond to their communities in a great manner, keeping their players entertained through their social media. This is showing other games how you should handle your social media, even though it appears as ‘less business-like’.

Both of these games have done tremendously well and deserve the top spots they have, I’m excited to see what Among Us 2 brings us next year!

  • Written By: Max Lang-Orsini

Top VR Games You NEED To Play

Virtual Reality Gaming

Virtual Reality has entered the gaming industry with a bang, and you can clearly see why. For those that never saw the appeal in VR, do not worry, I was once with you. You have to actually experience it yourself to understand how amazing the VR experience really is.

VR Headsets

Before we dive into the top VR games you have to play for yourself, what would be the best VR headset to have? Well, there isn’t a major difference in each branded headset, but they do change in shape and size. The popular headsets are; the Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and the recently released Valve Index VR headset.

As much fun as VR is to play, it does have a negativen that being a hefty price you have to be willing to dish out.

Top VR Games

Now, let’s dive into the list of the best VR games on the market!

Beat Saber

Beat Saber Logo

Released on the 1st of May 2018, this Rhythm game was published by Beat Games that would become an extremely popular VR game. Beat Saber consists of two different lightsaber-like tools (one red, one blue) and has to hit the corresponding notes on time with the beat of a chosen song in the right direction.

With an ingame leaderboard, this game sparks competition in players to beat their record, along with beating other players’ records too. This game is available on Oculus Quest, PlayStation 4 and is available as a PC Game on Steam, Windows.

Superhot VR

Superhot VR Cover

Superhot went live in February 2016 and was continued in the works until a Virtual Reality experience was made. Once the game was published, the game and it’s franchise exploded in popularity. Superhot VR is a game where you fight enemies with different levels and difficulty, progressively getting more and more difficult. However, the twist is that when you stand still, everything moves in slow motion, this way you can dodge bullets in a cool movie fashion.

It has won many awards in 2017 and 2018 and it is no surprise when you play the game how it won a total of 9 different awards. Superhot VR is available on PlayStation 4 & Steam, Windows.

Half-Life: Alyx

Half-Life: Alyx Cover

Half-Life: Alyx is a MUST play game in the VR spectrum. This is the game that broke the internet upon launch in March this year with it’s highly realistic and intensive graphics, it was clear why Valve went quiet for so long.

People demanded Half-Life 3 for years, and well, they sort of got it. This VR exclusive game that’s only available on Windows, Steam, was another installment into the Half-Life series and took place between the first and second game. This action adventure first person shooter game is a must play VR game, and really opens your eyes on what you can do for VR.

Tetris Effect

Tetris Effect Cover

If you’ve ever thought about tetris in VR and how crazy it would be, well, it’s actually a thing. Upon reading, I never believed it existed, and from playing I can definitely add to this list of must play VR games.

Released back in November of 2018, the Japanese Studios, ‘Monstars’ and ‘Resonair’ published Tetris Effect to ‘Enhance Games’.  This game has become a huge success and is a widely positive game that you can buy on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Xbox Series X & on Windows.

Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes

An intense great game to be played for fun with as many people as you want. This game was released originally in October of 2015 and a year later in the same month (October 2016) got a VR port.

This game has a player who is sitting in a room with a bomb that they must defuse, however, the other players will have the manual. Each player is not allowed to look at each other’s screen or the manual themself. The players must communicate with each other to solve the puzzles and defuse the bomb before it explodes!

Rock Band VR

Rockband VR Cover

Rock Band VR is the closest thing you could get to being able to play Guitar Hero in VR. For the Guitar Hero fans, you will love this tremendously.

Rock Band VR is a musical rhythm game, similar to beat saber, in which you play as part of a band with a guitar in your hands playing notes to the music. Like Guitar Hero VR, Rock Band VR shares a similar competitive aspect in attempting to get the highest score. Rock Band VR is available on a few platforms, Xbox and Windows.

Star Wars | Vader Immortal: Episode 1

Take yourself in a galaxy far far away and get immersed into the incredible battlefield that is Star Wars! There was a huge demand for Star Wars in VR and Oculus delivered with the first installment of ‘Vader Immortal’.

In this game, you get to play as the dark sith lord himself, Darth Vader, in an incredible experience. Star Wars | Vader Immortal: Episode 1 was released in 2019 with a huge success across all platforms. You can play this game on Windows, or through the Oculus Quest platform.

Resident Evil 7: Biohazard VR

The horror and jumpscares excel significantly when playing Resident Evil in VR. A game that took the gaming world by storm with it’s original series got an exclusive PlayStation VR port. Resident Evil is now playable in a way that you can actually be there yourself, so obviously, this one is a must need to play!

The VR port was released in 2017, originally just as a PlayStation VR exclusive but a year later was ported to Xbox One and Windows.

I hope you enjoy this list of the must play games in the VR experience. I hope this influences your decisions and takes you the right way, from my experience, you have to play these games.

Written By: Max Lang-Orsini

Tekken Tag Tournament 2

With the ever encroaching release of the series newest instalment of Tekken 7 into the home market, now seems like a golden opportunity to talk about one of the series most recent instalments, Tekken Tag Tournament 2. Once the poster child of the Playstation brand, the series has since branched out to reach all corners of the home console market, Tekken 7 represents the series first foray into PC gaming.

Story

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Much like the game it’s a direct sequel to, Tekken Tag Tournament 2’s story, represented in the game’s Arcade mode, allowing you to play through 9 stages of battles with its rich character roster, followed by a small cut scene. Though a number of these cut scenes are fun, it’s exceedingly difficult not to see this mode as lacking, especially for fans of a series as renowned for its complex (and arguably ridiculous) plots as Tekken. However, being only a “non-canon” spin off of the main series, I can understand the purpose of these cut scenes are only as a small reward, with the Game play being the absolute focus of the game.

Gameplay and Mechanics

It is therefore, understandably, through the game play that TTT2 really shines, boasting an enormous 59 unique playable characters. TTT2 never fails to be an exciting, intense and varied experience from start to finish. Making use of both “pick up and playability” and a rich, intricate combo system the developers were clearly aiming to capture both the casual and the serious, competitive players alike. At this, they succeed tremendously; while playing Tekken Tag Tournament 2 you will never for a moment feel like you have nowhere to improve or like you are absolutely finished with the game.

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The tag team mechanic, for which it is made, also adds new depths to the game play above that of the main series; allowing for a player to gain the upper hand on their opponent. This adds an overall aura of unpredictability, keeping the player on their toes knowing they can never be sure they’ve won a round even at the very last second.

Art Style

The games bright, vivid art style also goes along well with the huge variety in stages to create an absolutely stunning visual experience.

Overall, with a huge variety of modes, playable characters and move combinations, Tekken Tag Tournament 2 is truly an experience to be had, though fans of the series may find the lack of much story disappointing, the game more than makes up for it with its tremendous game play and breathtaking visuals. I recommend anyone, new or old to the series, play this game if they want a real understanding of the heights that fighting games can reach before the release of Tekken 7.

Written by: Max Lang-Orsini


Games of Thrones: Episode 2

The Lost Lords opens with Asher Forrester, the second-eldest son of the house and currently exiled to Yunkai. This is a perfect place to start. In the first episode they focused entirely on the Forrester family. The Lost Lords takes it further.

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The Lost Lords introduces others that are connected to the Forrester family. Two young women from other northern houses come to comfort the grieving family. Of the two women Beskha is the most vivid addition to the story. She is boisterous and engages in dirty talking. She jokes about the loose women and bounties with Asher. She is a strong addition to the story.

Some of the best moments of episode two take place at the beginning. They profoundly affect the overall plot, but cannot be told because it will give away too much of the story. Many of the same literary tricks of the books and films can be found here and are more pronounced in episode two then in episode one.

There are other scenes that will remind you of the books and films as well. Unlike the other Game of Throne stories that basically set the scene telling you important facts, such as the Fire and Ice episode that shared who is dead, who is alive and who is unaccounted for. The Lost Lords ties all of the previous episodes together in a nice bow, although the bow is not neatly tied. Would you have expected anything different? It was well worth the wait according.

As with all previous episodes the action scenes do not disappoint. You artfully must dodge swords, stab opponents and duck to avoid being hit with flying furniture. Be aware that the battle scenes are much bloodier and more violent than in previous episodes. With that in mind, it should be noted that in the episodes you could die much quicker than in the past. But do not let that deter you, the game automatically saves every few moves and put you right back in the action with little progress lost. The Lost Lords is more forgiving of mistakes and minimizes your hardships. This makes the chance of success and advancement much more attainable and fun.

There are also sequences where you have what they call have Gared training for a spot on the Night’s Watch. During this training you carry barrels across a yard, perform basic sword moves against other trainees and shoot straw dummies with arrows. This is a string of moments that brings you to an area of black cloaks and other characters. It may not be as exciting as the action scenes, but consider it a kind of breaking in the action that once again will not disappoint as the game progresses.

In The Lost Lords you are presented with the possibility of choosing your own path during your journey. Each path you choose impacts future events during your journey and the journey of the family members involved. Throughout your journey there are many paths you can choose. The politics of The Games of Thrones can be very stressful, which can evoke feelings of urgency throughout the game. Surprisingly, The Lost Lords is very entertaining, which leaves the frustration to be just an afterthought. The game is full of intrigue and surprises.

Before you take on the adventure of The Lost Lords remind yourself of the skills needed to conquer all from the previous episodes. Also remember that throughout your journey in the Lost Lords every decision you make affects members of the family involved, much like real life. Throughout the game you must stay alert and on your toes, always wondering who you can trust and realizing that every move you make affects the next one.

Written by Max Lang-Orsini