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RPG Reload File 028 - 'Phantasy Star 2'

Hello, gentle readers, and welcome to the RPG Reload, the weekly feature where men get discounts on piano lessons for reasons not divulged in the localization. Each week, we jump into the time tunnel and grab an RPG from the App Store's past to give it a play in modern times. It's a bit of revisiting, a bit of reflection, and a chance to take a deeper dive than our reviews typically allow for. The RPG genre is a wide one with a lot of different kinds of games in it, and I try to present a good variety in this feature from week to week. To help me out with that, I turn to you, the reader, to choose what I'm playing once a month. Today's article is one such reader's choice, and the next one at the beginning of April could be yours! All you have to do is tell me the name of the game you'd like to see me play in the comments below, in the Official RPG Reload Club thread in the forums, or by via a tweet to @RPGReload. I'll randomly choose a winner each time, so even if your choice is unpopular, it still has a chance. Go for it!..

GDC 2015: 'Legacy Quest' is a Dungeon Crawler with RPG Elements and an Awesome Visual Style

We are literally swimming in a sea of free to play action RPGs at GDC this year, and one of the ones that I liked the most was Legacy Quest which is being developed by Socialspiel Entertainment and published by Nexon M. Legacy Quest was just announced about a week ago, and is a hack 'n slash dungeon crawler first and foremost, but it also many RPG elements in terms of character leveling and equipment. It also has roguelike elements because of course it does. Right away you can see what a neat visual style Legacy Quest has. If you caught a static image of it, you might think it's a pixel art game, but it's actually fully in 3D and looks really awesome in motion. Check it out...

GDC 2015: 'Zero Sum' from 'One Player Pong' Developer is a Math Game for Stupid People

Squeezebox Software, aka solo developer Sean Kearney, aka the maker of One Player Pong [Free], has a new game coming out which he describes as "a math game for stupid people." I was lost within the first few levels, so I'm not sure what that says about my own intelligence level, but the game in question, Zero Sum, is actually really clever. If you're not a fan of math then don't be scared off, Zero Sum only deals with simple addition and subtraction. If anything, it actually has more in common with crosswords than anything else. Here's an extremely early look at Zero Sum, complete with celebrity-laden placeholder art, which should give you a good idea of what the game is about...

GDC 2015: 'Zodiac' is a Gorgeous RPG with a 'Final Fantasy' Writer and Composer

Kobojo's Zodiac. The game features story and audio by Final Fantasy veterans Kazushige Nojima and Hitoshi Sakimoto. While the story is obviously difficult to judge from a short demo, the artwork is fantastic. It's all done in detailed hand-drawn style, and Kobojo has done an amazing job at making the game come to life with the colors and animations. Seriously, check out the game in motion:..

GDC 2015: Will Kabam's 'Spirit Lords' be a "White Hat" Free-to-Play Action-RPG?

Can a free-to-play conglomerate like Kabam truly make a game that is good, friendly free-to-play, with a story aspect to it as well? That's what they're trying to do with their upcoming action-RPG Spirit Lords, which we got a hands-on demo of here at GDC. The game features 4-player real-time dungeon crawling and loot collection, as you build up your character and your powers to fight off evil enemies. We've got a lengthy demo below:..

GDC 2015: 'X-Mercs' from Game Insight Combines 'XCOM' with 'Clash of Clans'

Game Insight, prolific publisher of free-to-play games, is nearing the release on their take on XCOM with X-Mercs. You command a series of soldiers in a world full of irradiated creatures that you must fight off using smart tactics. And, of course, the occasional death laser from space. X-Mercs promises lengthy battles, upwards of 15 minutes, so don't expect this to be necessarily dumbed-down just because the game is from a free-to-play publisher in Game Insight. We have a short video showing off some of the battles and what you can do outside of them, including the aforementioned laser death cannon:..

GDC 2015: Toast's 'Guardian Stone' Lets Cherubs and Succubi Fight Side-by-Side

NHN Entertainment's Toast brand is releasing a new free-to-play RPG, entitled Guardian Stone. In this game, you command your hero and a team of guardians in battle, fighting enemy encounters, leveling up your guardians, collecting and crafting new loot, and trying to make your way through the world. Guardians have different rarities, and come in a variety of types: you can fight with flying cats and cherubs alongside a succubus, so to say. If they can fight, they can fight. Check out a hands-on video of the game from GDC:..

GDC 2015: 11 bit Studios' 'This War of Mine' iPad Version in Development

11 bit Studios last year announced This War of Mine, an interesting game where you play as civilians in the middle of a war, scrounging for supplies and trying to survive until the war ends. The game came out on PC last year to critical acclaim, but now the tablet version is finally making its way later this year. We got to check out the tablet version and talk a bit about the game in a hands-on demo:..

GDC 2015: ‘Disco Party’ is a Neat Puzzle Platformer

Earlier this week, we had the opportunity to speak with GV Game Developer about their maiden game, Disco Party. A puzzle platformer, Disco Party has a lot of the basic tenets for the genre that we’ve all come to know and accept. Levels are bite-sized and challenge players to control an always-moving disco dancer as he collects records and eventually reaches a dancer for that assumedly last dance. The puzzle platforming elements come into play via the ability to tap and convert the tiles into special ones with special properties. For example, tapping once turns a tile into a barrier, forcing your avatar to turn around and walk in the opposite direction. Tapping twice converts a tile into a springboard to get across pitfalls while a third tap completely reverses gravity and offers a different perspective in getting past levels...

GDC 2015: 'Smooth Operator' is the Multiplayer Tongue-Kissing Simulator You Always Wanted

One of the goofier games I've gottent o play this year at GDC has been Smooth Operator, a multiplayer tongue-kissing simulator from Portland-based Beardo Games. While the game is still in the works and being expanded, the current version the devs were showing off was itself expanded from a recent Ludum Dare game jam entry they made. Watch our glorious kissing skills here:..

GDC 2015: Uber-Stylish Transit Simulator 'Mini Metro' is Coming to iPad

PC game Mini Metro is making its way to iOS, and after a hands-on demo of the game, there's plenty of reason to be excited about this one. It is essentially a game about connecting transit lines in a number of levels loosely based off of real-world cities. New destinations keep popping up, and you must connect the limited number of train lines, with underwater tunnels and the like also in limited supply, in ideal order as new passengers and new locales start to pop up. Here's a video of the iPad version in action:..

GDC 2015: 'Phenom-A-Ball', a Matching Game with Physics

The matching game genre is a tough nut to crack, and the people making those games are always trying to differentiate themselves from the pack. Vortex Games has a new matching game coming out called Phenom-A-Ball, and it hopes to set itself apart by adding physics to the objects you'll be matching. Balls fall in from the top of the screen, and unlike most matching games, you can actually combine sets of at least 3 like colors to create huge combos. Like Tetris the playfield just keeps filling up and if it reaches the top it's game over. There are also some cool power-ups and a special meter that, once filled, let's you turn off gravity which causes all the balls to float into the air. During that time you can tap to pop them like a mad man, which can really help you get out of a tight jam. ..

Out Now: 'RAD Boarding', 'Blockwick 2', 'Lastronaut', 'Pixel Heroes: Byte & Magic', 'Real Steel Champions', 'Warhammer: Snotling Fling' and More

As you probably know we are at GDC 2015 all week, which has us running around all over town and in general being really busy. Hence why there wasn't our normal "Coming Tonight" post this morning. Apologies for that. However, we did find the time to dig through the forums and compile a list of new game that are out right now, including RAD Boarding, Lastronaut and, a sequel to one of my all-time favorite games, Blockwick 2. So check out the list below and if there's anything we missed give it a shout out in the comments...

GDC 2015: 'Aralon: Forge and Flame', the Epic Open-World RPG is Looking Better than Ever

It's crazy to think that it's been more than a year since Crescent Moon and Galoobeth Games announced Aralon: Forge and Flame, the follow-up to Aralon: Sword and Shadow [$4.99] the groundbreaking open-world RPG for mobile devices that originally launched in late 2010. Time flies, as they say, and Aralon: Forge and Flame has been progressing in the many months since its unveiling. We had a chance to check out the latest build of the game here at GDC, and it's looking phenomenal...

We're busy little bees running around GDC meeting with developers and checking out cool games, but this is just a quick heads up that the latest update for Pixelbite's tactical dual-stick shooter Space Marshals [$4.99] is now available as a free update in the App Store. The update adds Chapter Two to the game, which includes new weapons, new gear, new missions to complete and new enemies to defeat. Check out the trailer...

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