Quick Bits! 06/08

Well boy, it sure has been a while since I typed up one of these fancy Quick Bits doodads! The post with the most, the news you can use, the words you..deserve?…It works enough. As the gaming world gets prepped for a week of madness and excitement that is E3 this week has been surprisingly active with developers and publishers letting news break early for their anticipated games. While I think that’s slightly disappointing, its at least made for an interesting week. Now, onto the bits!

Trendy is certainly Trending: Dungeon Defenders has been quite the successful little game on the PC and XBLA platforms, but now, just as the sequel is having the finishing touches put upon it, the developer Trendy Entertainment is in some serious hot water. News has come out from several past and current employees of the small indie studio that work conditions and management have been terrible all this time. From mandatory seven day work weeks, mistreatment of staff, particularly female workers, frequent berating from management, and even feeling forced to miss out on family emergencies due to fear of being terminated on the spot. Half a dozen workers have quit over the past two months with many more planning on leaving the studio once work is complete on Dungeon Defenders 2. While the studio president Jeremy Stieglitz has attempted to claim these are false allegations, the amount of evidence, from emails to skype calls, says otherwise. This is a terrible situation and hopefully things change fast, or this Florida studio may be going away for good.

The Plus in PlayStation: For the month of June Sony had already made many PlayStation Plus members happy with several titles being put up on the Instant Collection tab. From Saints Row The Third, Deus Ex, Zero Escape, Orc Attack, and Machinarium all up for play for members of the great service. But feeling generous during this exciting E3 time Sony have gone and added three more great games to the Instant Collection this month. Uncharted 3 leads the charge with Little Big Planet Karting and XCOM Enemy Unknown following suite. That is a mighty fine collection of games to keep you busy over the next month, but PlayStation 3 owners don’t forget you should be picking up and playing The Last of Us in just one week! Good news all around for Sony fans.

Humble gets Serious: Ah, the Humble Bundle. What a great service to fans of gaming and to indie developers and the Childs Play charity. Currently happening over at the Humble Bundle site are two great sales, one featuring the entire Serious Sam franchise and the other showcasing a great variety of indie darlings. For $6 you can grab eleven great games such as Hotline Miami, Thomas Was Alone, and Awesomenauts. And for only $4 you can get the entire collection of ass kicking mayhem that comes with the Serious Sam name. Games for everyone!

Undead Labs is quite Alive: This past week the great folks over at the small indie studio Undead Labs have finally released their long in development title, State of Decay. Announced in 2011 but in development before that, State of Decay is an open world survival title featuring those darn zombies everyone seems to love today. Though the team didn’t have any advertising budget and the game was little known to most gamers before its surprise June 5th launch, thanks to passionate fans and high critical marks from sites such as IGN and Polygon, the game has gone on to become the second fastest selling XBLA title ever, just behind Minecraft. In only two days the title has sold a quarter million copies and that number is sure to grow as more gamers get word of the game and more reviews begin to pour out. This is great news for a studio that has never released a game before. Expect a review from me on this surprise hit soon.

Link is faster than Ever: Speaking about his upcoming surprise sequel A Link to the Past 2, producer Eiji Aonuma has informed fans that for the first time on a handheld system, Zelda will be running at a smooth 60 frames per second in this latest outing. While this number will mean a constant smooth experience for animations and enemy encounters, this number will also improve the 3D effect from the game. He explained  “The faster the framerate, the more stable the 3D effect, so 60 fps is a big deal.” While 3D will not be necessary for any puzzle solving, I have always felt the 3D effect, while subtle in most 3DS games, does improve the overall look of each title and makes them more impressive.

And that does it for this three month late edition of Quick Bits! I’m sure it was everything you had hoped and more. Now I leave you with a brand new (and very long) trailer for Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2.

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