Godzilla needs a match-3 game like I need a hole in my head

Mar 17, 2014

There’s a pretty fantastic-looking Godzilla reboot on the horizon. If you haven’t watched the trailer yet, you should go and do that now. Go on. I’ll wait.

Did you watch it? Amazing, right? Godzilla + Walter White = the only movie you need to see this summer. A monstrously huge movie like this deserves an equally monstrous video game tie-in. But instead of a crazy, over-the-top action game, the King of All Monsters is about to get saddled with a genre not terribly befitting of his city-crushing nature: the match-3 game.

Godzilla Smash-3 looks to blend some pretty stellar visuals with the “draw-a-line” match-3 tactics of games like Dungeon Raid. The game’s official announcement promises “RPG-style progression” as well, which usually pairs nicely with match-3 gameplay.

And did we mention it’s being developed by Pipeworks Software, the folks responsible for Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee and its two sequels?

Ok, maybe this could be good after all.

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Google Play Games is about to get a whole lot better

Mar 17, 2014

Google has always had the tools to make mobile gaming on Android devices into a force to take on iOS toe-to-toe, it’s just been a question of having the will and awareness to put them together in a way that makes sense for developers. With the now-underway Game Developer’s Conference in San Francisco as a backdrop, that time may have arrived.

On the same day it’s sponsoring a Developer Day at GDC, Google is introducing a range of improvements to the Google Play Games service intended to make it even more attractive to designers and players alike. Chief among them are game gifts, roping in Google+ to allow in-game items to be sent to anyone in a person’s Circles, and the option for direct multiplayer invites through the Play Games app.

The Google Play Store is getting 18 new categories to aid in discoverability, something Google Play Games lead product manager Greg Hartrell told Polygon was sorely needed.

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"We've never had a role-playing game category," Hartrell said to Polygon. "There isn't a music game category. And if you're into those types of games, you're relegated to using search right now, or relying on it being recommended to you."

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5 must-play games from #cyberpunkjam

Mar 16, 2014

From March 1st through the 11th, game developers from around the world participated in the Cyberpunk Jam, an event which challenged developers to create a game based in the cyberpunk genre.

The only rules for the Cyberpunk Jam were the game must be cyberpunk-themed, and based on an image provided by the event organizers. 

By the end of the game jam, 256 games had been produced. The following five were some of our favorites.

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The Week In Review: Layoffs, funding, IPOs, oh my!

Mar 14, 2014

We ran a survey recently asking our game developer friends what more they want to see on Gamezebo.  One of the key pieces of feedback we received is that you want to see more industry news.  Who k(new)?  

As long as you read and share this news round-up (hint, hint, you wild and crazy people with tons of followers on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn), and there’s enough interesting news to round up, we’ll sum the news up for you every Friday.

This week:  PopCap and Disney layoffs, Large Animal Games is closing, King is still going public, and lot of new studios and businesses forming.

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Bridge Constructor Review

Mar 14, 2014

Bridge Constructor by HeadUp Games is a bridge-building mobile game that lets you exercise your physics prowess. It also offers a strong, important reminder: Not everyone is cut out for building bridges. It's OK for a bridge to fall apart on your screen, but in real life, smiling sheepishly and shrugging while cars plummet into ravines simply isn't acceptable.

So, if you don't know anything about engineering, is it still worth giving Bridge Constructor a go? Sure it is. The game challenges you to build serviceable bridges. There's no need for them to pass any hoity-toity government inspections. If the whole shebang collapses but the cars driving across manage to outrun the destruction, the point's still yours. No jail time!

Bridge Constructor

Each level of Bridge Constructor offers up a gap that must be bridged (it turns out an earthquake has shaken all the world's previous bridges to dust). Your supplies include concrete gates, girders, cables, and plain old wood. 

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More layoffs at PopCap

Mar 13, 2014

Earlier today, Gamefront had an anonymous source claiming PopCap Games, maker of the Plants vs. Zombies titles, had suffered a round of layoffs. Parent company Electronic Arts wouldn’t comment on the source’s number of 30 jobs lost, but did provide the site with a statement from PopCap GM and co-founder John Vechey confirming that some people had been let go:

“The changes we made today at PopCap were painful and we’re sorry to lose some of our friends and colleagues. But it was also necessary in order to stay on course with our future plans for mobile games, live services, and new IP. PopCap is a studio that made its name building great games that the world can fall in love with, and that’s what we’ll continue to do.”

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This isn’t the first time PopCap has suffered a reduction in headcount since it was purchased by EA in July 2011. Fifty employees were laid off from North American locations in August 2012, and the company’s Dublin studio was closed a month later.

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Cloud Raiders Walkthrough

Mar 13, 2014

Cloud Raiders is a free to play action strategy game from Game Insight, wherein you must train troops to take on enemies in a story-based fashion to steal their loot. Gamezebo’s quick start strategy guide will provide you with detailed images, tips, information, and hints on how to play your best game.

Cloud Raiders

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The Tribez & Castlez Review

Mar 13, 2014

A couple of years ago, Russian game publisher Game Insight brought us the prehistoric village-builder The Tribez. In it, we took on the role of an adventurous scientist who helps a primitive tribe rebuild their village. In the new sequel to that game, The Tribez and Castlez, we once again don the scientist's lab coat, this time setting our sights on saving a medieval kingdom. Unfortunately, that change in scope is more or less the only way to differentiate the two games, which means Tribez veterans have little in the way of new experiences to enjoy in the sequel.

The Tribez and Castlez begins with the first game's mad scientist (at least I think it's him; he seems to have grown some hair since then) and his pretty tribal sidekick Aurora touching down in the middle of a medieval kingdom. Actually, they don't just touch down—they crash land Dorothy-in-Oz-like on top of a magical crystal. In one way, this helps the Prince of the realm since it sends a marauding army of greenskins running. In another, it causes problems for him since he then needs a significant portion of his kingdom rebuilt.

The Tribez & Castlez

Being magically transformed from a scientist to a mage, you set out to help the Prince and his subjects by building structures, clearing land and collecting resources. This is where, if you've played The Tribez, deja vu is likely to set in. 

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Bridge Constructor Walkthrough

Mar 13, 2014

Bridge Constructor is a bridge building / physics game from HeadUp Media. In this game, you use different materials to build bridges that must be stable enough to support the weight of trucks and cars.  Gamezebo’s walkthrough will provide you with some tips and hints that will help you build bridges that don't cause too many casualties.

Bridge Constructor

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An Angry Birds RPG? That should be EPIC

Mar 12, 2014

Having already tackled the worlds of physics-based puzzle games, kart racing, animation, plush toys and more, you’d think there were few frontiers left for Rovio left to conquer with the Angry Birds brand. And apparently, you’d be wrong.

The next game in the seemingly unstoppable franchise is on the way, and in a move sure to make people everywhere do double takes, it’s a turn-based RPG with a crafting system. Angry Birds Epic is its name, and the always fortunate folks in Canada and Australia will be able to play it this week before it invades iOS, Android and Windows Phone 8 devices worldwide later this year.

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It sounds like the crafting will tie in with the game’s monetization, as TechCrunch’s Darrell Etherington says players will be able to use in-app purchases to help make weapons and armor. A bigger question might be what birds would even use to make gear. Can you grab an old hubcap to use as a shield or fashion really pointy sticks into arrows?

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