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Clandestine Review – A Solid Indie Stealth Adventure

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Clandestine review

Clandestine is the latest title from the creators of Expeditions: Conquistador. The stealth-hacking game, currently in Early Access, is the company’s first title outside of the Expeditions series and goes in a fairly different direction to those games, though it does feature quite a strong tactical element. Logic Artists have gone for an asymmetrical game style, with players taking on the role of either spy or hacker (or both, in single player). It’s not a perfect system, but it brings a lot to the stealth-genre table.

First, the good. Clandestine has a lot of potential as a co-op game. One player takes on the role of spy, while the other player takes on the role of the hacker. The spy spies and the hacker enables the spying by opening doors, finding passwords, disabling cameras, and so on. The reliance on the hacker makes the experience thoroughly exhilarating, which is how a good stealth game should feel. Both players are also forced to pay attention at all times. If the hacker loses track of their spy, things will go pear-shaped fairly quickly.

But if you’re more interested in a single-player experience, as I was, Clandestine also has that. The single-player mode essentially just has one player take on both roles. Playing alone isn’t terrible, but it’s clear the game wasn’t designed with single-player in mind. Having to manage both the spy and the hacking makes things… clunky. Shifting into hacker mode pulls you out of the action of being the spy, and going back into spy mode will quickly make you lose track of what you were doing as the hacker – which, as mentioned before, is something you’ll really want to stay on top of.

Clandestine review

Hacking mode

The main problem with single-player is that you can’t do two things at once, which makes things jarring at best and frustrating at worst. While hacking, your spy might get caught and killed before you even realise what’s happening, and while spying, your hacker might be kicked out of the network you spent so long breaking into. It’s not necessarily the fault of this game in particular. It’s more a problem with translating multi-player games into single-player experiences as a whole – one person can’t be in two places at once.

Of course, Clandestine is still fairly early in development so there are plenty of other issues. If you like to play with a controller, it’s a patchy experience. Controllers are supported, but all prompts and tutorials are for mouse and keyboard-users only, so you’ll have to guess which buttons do what. And there are some buttons that didn’t seem to have any controller options at all. Movement felt a little clunky and activating options such as closing doors was frustrating at times. But these are all issues that will, hopefully, be fixed in due time. As far as hacking goes, however, mouse use is so heavy that it’s unlikely a controller will ever be an option for this mode.

Clandestine is a promising game. Seen in the context of Early Access, there’s a lot of potential here for a seriously fun stealth experience. If some of these kinks can be ironed out, the single-player experience could be vastly improved. The multi-player experience is already a exhilarating exercise in stress management (in the best possible way). This is a game to keep an eye on.

Rhiannon likes video games and she likes writing, so she decided to combine them. As well as writing about video games, she also belts out the occasional science fiction or fantasy story, edits videos, and eats strawberry oreos. In that order.

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Are you eagerly anticipating what Absurd Ventures has in store for us in the coming years

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Activision has recently announced the establishment of a new studio, Elsewhere Entertainment, located in Warsaw. The studio has been entrusted with the exciting challenge of creating a groundbreaking AAA franchise that will captivate players with its immersive storytelling and innovative gameplay. A significant number of employees were let go by the large corporation after the completion of Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard King earlier this year.

According to IGN, Activision made the announcement in a blog post, sharing that the team will be based in Poland with additional resources in the US. The studio has assembled a team of highly skilled individuals who have worked on acclaimed titles such as The Last of Us, Uncharted, The Witcher, Destiny, Far Cry, and Tom Clancy’s The Division.

Activision’s response to IGN’s request for a studio logo or official artwork was rather unconventional. Instead of providing the requested materials, they sent over the Cambridge University dictionary definition of the word “elsewhere.”. However, with a discerning eye, one may catch a glimpse of something lurking in the background. The publication acknowledges that, whatever it may be, it has no connection to Call of Duty. Elsewhere Entertainment has been granted full access to Activision’s extensive resources and cutting-edge tools, enabling them to further enhance their production and development capabilities. We may have to wait a while before we find out what they have in store for us.

Curious about Activision’s latest venture, Elsewhere Entertainment? Opening a new studio after numerous layoffs—is it a tasteless move or simply another harsh reality of the video game industry? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below.

 

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Rockstar Co-Founder Dan Houser is currently working on the development of an exciting new ‘Open World Action-Adventure’ game

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Last year, we reported that Rockstar co-founder Dan Houser had launched a new studio called Absurd Ventures, with the aim of developing original IP for all platforms and formats. The new outfit has recently started development on a game that boasts top-notch combat and third-person action in a variety of game modes.

This information is available, as Eurogamer discovered, from a recent job listing on the developer’s website. The company is looking for more people to join their team and contribute to an “open-world action-adventure game.”. According to Eurogamer, it seems that the project they are working on is still in its early stages. They are currently in the process of hiring for important positions like lead designer, lead gameplay designer, art director, and technical director.

Absurd Venture is dedicated to crafting immersive narrative experiences across a wide range of mediums, such as games, animation, books, graphic novels, live-action, and scripted podcasts. Their mission is to create captivating worlds, compelling characters, and engaging stories that span diverse genres. The former vice president of writing at Rockstar, who co-wrote both Red Dead Redemption games, has recently joined the studio. Additionally, Lazlow Jones, a former writer and producer at Rockstar, has also come on board.

Are you eagerly anticipating what Absurd Ventures has in store for us in the coming years? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below.

 

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Assassin’s Creed Shadows, the physical version, requires an online connection for installation

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Players who choose to go with a physical copy of the recently announced Assassin’s Creed Shadows will need an Internet connection in order to finish the installation. This is unlikely to pose a problem for most Ubisoft fans, but it does align with a trend that is worth mentioning. It follows a requirement that was initially introduced in 2023’s Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora and will also be the case with the upcoming Star Wars Outlaws.

As reported by VGC, pre-orders for the game are now available, and a notice on the front box art at retailers such as Best Buy and GameStop states: “Internet connection is necessary for game installation.” For Avatar, players had to install a day-one patch before being able to start the game. However, both Shadows and Outlaws come with a warning prominently displayed on the front of the box.

The lack of a clear explanation for this requirement raises concerns about the long-term preservation of the game, particularly if the servers are eventually shut down. In December, Ubisoft made the decision to delist the original The Crew, effectively ending its run. This unfortunate event may not be the last time we see a game meet a similar fate.

What are your thoughts on Ubisoft’s requirement of an online connection for the installation of its flagship games? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below.

 

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