EBF5: Free Version and Steam Updates

Hey guys, I’ve update the free version of Epic Battle Fantasy 5 on my website. This means that that version is up to date and “finished” now. Not sure when it will come to other websites, but for now you can play it there, and there’s been a lot of changes since it was in beta.

I’ve also updated the game on Steam, going right from version 1.2 to 1.5, so there’s a lot of things that can go wrong, especially with the new saving system. Just so everyone knows: You have the option to stay on the old version if you wish. It might be worth a try if you encounter any major problems. You can go to Steam Client > EBF5 > Right Click > Properties > Betas > Select version 1.2.

PlayStation VR Review

Hey guys, I’ve been playing a lot of PSVR this month, and it’s been a really awesome experience overall.

But let’s get the negative stuff out of the way first:
• It’s definitely not good value for money. Getting the headset and new controllers will cost you almost as much as a new console, on top of needing to own a PS4. A lot of the games that are available are also quite short, so expect to burn through some cash.
• Apparently the VR controllers are out of stock everywhere right now, so I haven’t had a chance to try them yet! For now I’m stuck with games that use the normal PS4 controller.
• Many games will make you feel motion sickness instantly. In most cases you will quickly get used to it with some practice, but there’s some games that many people will struggle with. So depending on your tolerance, you may be limited to certain types of games.
• If you love very high resolution and realistic graphics… you’re not going to get that here. The graphics on VR games are going to look at least one console generation out of date. Each eye only sees half of a 1080p screen!
• Kids aren’t even allowed to play it! I’m assuming no company wants to accidentally discover the long-term health consequences of VR on kids.

All of those points make it a hard sell for most people. But if you’re an adult who has money and only a limited amount of time to play games, then VR offers a huge variety of experiences to try out. So here’s some quick reviews of my favourite games so far. What I can say about all of these games is that they’re really immersive! When you put on the headset you really feel like you’re suddenly in a different location, and that’s a really cool feeling that can be exploited in many ways.

Astro Bot Rescue Mission

This is a must-play game. It’s basically a 3D Mario game, which surprisingly translates very well into VR. You are the camera, and the whole gimmick of the game is moving your head around to find secrets and to get different views of obstacles, while controlling your robot like you would with Mario. It’s a game that feels familiar and fresh at the same time, and is easy enough for anyone to try it. It really should have been a launch title, as it shows off what the new hardware can do – both the VR headset and the motion controls on the PS4 controller. I’ve historically hated motion controls in games, but we’ve come a long way since the Wii, and the hardware and game design makes great use of them. The music is also catchy as hell. I can’t recommend this game enough, but it’s really hard to explain why it feels so good to play this.
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WipEout Omega Collection

It’s a sci-fi racing game in VR, and just like you’d expect, it will probably make you feel sick instantly. After a lot of practice, I can play it for a few hours now, but the dizziness never completely went away. It helps a lot if you only look forward – which is probably what you should be doing while driving anyway. About the game itself, well, it’s nothing too special. Since it’s essentially 3 games-in-one, there’s a ton of content, and it can keep you busy for a long time if you want.

Moss

If Astro Bot is Mario, Moss is a lot like Zelda. There’s platforming, puzzles, hack and slash combat action, and a simple fantasy story. The animations and scenery are really cute, and you feel like you’re a giant that’s sitting in a comfy little mouse world. This game should cause you no nausea, since there’s no motion to speak of – you always sit in a fixed place on each map. That makes it another good title to start with. However, the game is really short. It honestly feels like half a game. It’s great fun while it lasts though.
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Resident Evil 7

I was dared to play this one, but it turned into my favourite horror game ever. There’s a few janky moments where you are reminded that you’re playing a video game – like for example when you occasionally see your arms float around detached from your body because you’ve sat back further in your chair. But for the most part it works really well in VR, and all of the horror aspects are more exciting and immersive. The hiding segments feel especially natural, when you’re trying to peak around obstacles by moving your head around. The game difficulty is quite reasonable for a survival horror casual like me. The bosses are creative, the pacing is excellent, and there’s even a decent amount of humour in the game. Overall fantastic experience. Even if you’re too scared to play it yourself, it’s worth watching someone else play it.

Robinson: The Journey

Here’s a sort of adventure game about dinosaurs. It’s quite a casual game – not far off from being a walking sim, but there is fair amount of simple puzzles and platforming. It’s all about exploring alien jungles, climbing cliffs, and scanning weird creatures, while being accompanied by your pet dinosaur and a helper robot. A nice little experience, but once again, this game is very short.

I’ve also recently started Battle Zone and Here They Lie, which also seem to be very good games.

Fanart: Anna emote

Hi folks!

Matt’s been pretty sick for the past few days and is taking it easy with work. Although I’m feeling a bit better for now, I’m not 100% either so we’ve been relaxing with lots of PS4, old episodes of AVGN, and all the tea.

Here’s some fanart from Epifex, inspired by the EBF5 Asset Pack (in case more of you missed it)

- Ronja

Anna_Whistle

EBF5: Version 1.5

Hey guys, version 1.5 of EBF5 is available on Steam.
To opt-in, go to Steam Client > EBF5 > right-click > Properties > Betas > Select the other version.
I’ll set this live for everyone in a few days if no problems are found.

Here’s a list of changes:
• Added the Chinese New Year holiday quest, which includes 2 new equips and a new skill. (available 18th of Jan)
• Nerfed the Cosmic Gigalith. It no longer does damage when killed, and it has less HP if you save after beating it.
• Buffed the Evil Players, by making cheap tactics less effective against them.
• Added a new music track, used in the 1st and 4th dungeons.
• Reduced foe stat growth after level 36, so players are not punished for grinding at the end of the game.
• Fixed a bunch of minor bugs, translation errors, and made some minor balancing changes, like buffing Snow Cats.
• Someone pointed out that the audio was set to mono rather than stereo, so let me know if it sounds any better now.

This might be the last update for a few months. But I’ve got a lot of new content planned for later!

A Breeze From Home Remix Contest

A Breeze From Home composer Phyrnna and vocalist Troisnyx are hosting a Remix Contest on Newgrounds.

  • The winner will receive an EBF5 Steam Key and a copy of the EBF5 Original Soundtrack
  • The runner up will receive an EBF5 Steam Key

They are looking for a remix/cover that

  • is between 2min 30sec and 8min in length
  • is a new piece of music
  • incorporates the original vocals from the track
  • can be recognized as a remix/cover of the original
  • abides by Newgrounds audio rules

The deadline for submissions is on January 31st 2019 at 23:59 GMT.

Full set of rules and information can be found here.
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Future Plans for EBF5

Hey guys, with EBF5 launched, here’s a little road-map of what I plan to do next.

• Sometime this month I’ll release version 1.5 on Steam, which will include some minor bug fixes and balancing tweaks, and the Chinese New Year quest.

• I’m not in a hurry to publish the game on Newgrounds and Kongregate, as I’d like to rest for a while, and it doesn’t need the extra publicity at the moment. I’ll update the free version on my website though, so please yell at me if I haven’t done that by next month.

• I have a lot of new content planned for EBF5, which I’ll release in… I dunno, half a year or more? This includes 3 more optional dungeons and other secret stuff.

• I’ll probably pause my Patreon, as I don’t have anything to post there at the moment. But sometime later I’d like to add more perks, such as a section in EBF5′s Grand Gallery that lists long-time patrons.

• Once ALL of that is out of the way, I’d like to attempt a mobile port of EBF5. Running the game on mobile is no problem, it’s just a question of improving the performance and changing the user interface. I don’t know how it will turn out.

But anyway, I’ll be taking it easy this month and maybe next month too. The only work I’ll be doing is minor game updates, replying to user problems, and legal/accounting paperwork (woo, fun) such as officially hiring Ronja.