March 2017

PIXEL SOUNDS

Returning for its fifth year, Pixel Sounds is making its way back to Campbelltown Arts Centre as part of its Contemporary Music Festival. Kicking off on Saturday March 11, the event will showcase some of the finest chiptune creators not only within Australia, but the world over. 

 

Outside of the performances, there will also be a number of workshops hosted by Pixel Sounds’ performers, each aiming to teach you basic tricks of the trade. 

 

Tickets to the performance start from only $5, so if you have a growing passion for chiptunes, or want to see a show with a difference, head to campbelltownartscentre.com.au for more information. 

 

ZOMBIE DASH 

Love to run but need some new motivation? Well, how about a bunch of friendly zombies on your tail to urge you onward? Such is the set-up for Zombie Dash, a unique five-kilometre fun run in the Central Coast’s Mount Penang Parklands

 

Taking place on Saturday April 8, each runner must make their way through the parklands with a headlight to help guide them from one safe zone to the next. On the way, zombie volunteers permeate the path, hoping to add some fun, laughter and maybe even a shriek or two into the mix. Tickets start at $50, but to hear more about the event, visit zombiedash.com.au.

 

Preview:

Prey (PS4, XBO, PC) 

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Prey, the game many thought to be dead after completely dropping off the radar, feels like a fascinating amalgamation of various sources of inspiration. Part BioShock, part Dishonored and part Alien: Isolation, it places you in a world where nothing is as it seems and danger lurks around every corner.

 

As we were thrust into the shooter’s early hours, uncertainty and suspicion filled the air. You play as Morgan Yu (you can also choose to play as a male lead), who wakes to find herself in her apartment in the year 2032. A brief phone call and helicopter ride later and you’ve led the woman into a lab to conduct simple yet strange experiments for reasons unknown. Needless to say, things don’t exactly go according to plan – leaving behind a whole lot of questions that you’ll undoubtedly want answers to.

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As Morgan, you’re vulnerable in Prey’s world (at least in the early stages), going up against a stronger, more agile and adaptive foe – Mimics. Your primary foe in the early stages, Mimics are not only a worthy adversary, but a refreshing one to boot. Capable of masking themselves into any surrounding object, they can (and will) surprise you when you least expect it and are capable of dealing out hefty amounts of damage before you know it. In fact, there were numerous stages throughout the demo that had us literally jumping at the shock of their arrival, and they’re unlikely to be the last. Add to that some creative weaponry within your arsenal and you’re all set for a fun sci-fi adventure.

 

Considering the turmoil that Prey has suffered over the last few years, there’s no doubt that developer Arkane Studios has gotten things back on track. Hopefully the team is able to nail the home stretch.

 

Reviews:

Sniper Elite 4 (PS4, XBO, PC)

 

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The Sniper Elite series might fly under most people’s radar, but its fan base is strong and loyal, helping it become successful enough to bring us Sniper Elite 4. 

 

Once again you’re in control of Karl Fairburne, master marksman. Each of the game’s eight missions places you in the middle of a sandbox area with nothing more than your loadout and objectives, and from there it’s up to you to decide how you go about completing them. Sniping, naturally, is often the best solution, so fans should rest easy in the knowledge that the infamous X-ray kill cam remains firmly in place, showcasing one exploding body part after another. Sniper Elite 4 is an unflinchingly brutal game, but often gleefully so.

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Sure, this entry could be seen as more of an iteration than a true evolution, but it’s hard to complain when the end product remains this polished.

★★★★

 

 

For Honor (PS4, XBO, PC)

[Main image above]

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From the outset, For Honor oozes style, setting up a reality historians could only ever dream of by mashing the worlds of knights, samurai and Vikings into one. It’s a world where one must duel the other for ultimate glory.

 

Thankfully, said duels are very well done, operating more in the vein of a fighting game like Street Fighter than a hack-and-slasher like the Dynasty Warriors series. Button mashing will only get you so far. A surprisingly enjoyable campaign and tense online environment round out what is an impressive first outing.

★★★★

 

 

Yakuza 0 (PS4)

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Whether you’re a long-time fan or total newcomer, Yakuza 0 is an absolute riot. A prequel set in 1988 starring the series’ mainstays, it’s a perfect jumping off point for those unacquainted with the series while simultaneously telling a mature and engaging story.

 

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Surprisingly though, the real splendour of the game is not its main quest, but its distractions. From darts, to batting cages, karaoke, UFO catchers and disco dancing, it’s impressively and dauntingly varied. Along with a wealth of side quests, you have an adventure begging for your time, and more than deserving of it, too.

★★★★☆

 

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