Games of PAX: Cuphead, Dark Souls III and Mario Tennis

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Time for some more run downs on games we played at PAX on the weekend. Of course we can’t write up everything we’ve played, but these are some of the games that have stuck out the most!

Cuphead

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That art style.

The first thing you’ll probably notice about Cuphead is the art style pulled straight from Steamboat Willie. Developed by Canadian brothers Chad and Jared Moldenhauer this homage  to early 20th Century cartoons puts the player through a series of rigorous boss battles. Remember platformer boss battles? Those things that are usually near impossible? Yeah, that’s Cuphead. You run and jump whilst clicking your fingers to fire projectiles at enemies.

The premise of the game is that you’ve lost a deal with the devil and now must do his bidding. No mention yet as to whether you can steal the devil’s hands and play a holophoner. You can check out the Cuphead trailer from E3 2015 below:

Through the small amount of time I played it stood out as one of the hardest games at PAX. It’s pretty much Disney presents Dark Souls. Which is funny because we played Dark Souls III and it was actually easier.

Cuphead is set for a release in 2016 for Xbox One and Microsoft Windows.

Dark Souls III

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The PAX banner that pretty much says fuck you to gamers.

From Disney Dark Souls to actual soul crushing Dark Souls, this was always going to be a popular booth. So I’m just going to come out and say it. Dark Souls III is pretty much Bloodborne II. Feel some rage boiling deep down after reading that? Come on, I know at least one of you hated the implications of that sentence. Yes, I know Bloodborne  was essentially a Dark Souls spin-off, but playing Dark Souls III actually looked and felt more like Bloodborne than it did any of the other Souls games.

What I played was good, I managed to not die for a while, which was a nice touch. It was a strange game to have a mass demo, usually at PAX and other expos players rotate when they die or after a set time, but with this it was more like just die a few times until you felt the person behind was glowering a hole in the back of your head. The wait time was pretty chaotic and hard to judge, but it was fun watching people fail hopelessly at gaming.

Overall Darks Souls III didn’t seem to push and boundaries, but will most likely be a favourite among fans as it has folded the beauty of Bloodborne into the mix.

Mario Tennis: Ultra Smash

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Mario justifiably has some insecurities about his height.

The original Mario Tennis on 64 was a staple sleepover game and ended up being a blood sport with my friends. It was brutal cartoony tennis action. Playing against fellow LoadScreen editor Tom Heath felt like going back in time, the mechanics of the game are the same old easy to play hard to master Nintendo fun.

The controls are simple and each button/style of shot bring something new to the court. Timing shots correctly is as important as ever and is pretty much the key to winning. The turning giant on the court aspect does seem pretty OP and hard to beat, but we only played one match, so it’s hard to judge how it can be combated.

The true learning experience from playing Mario Tennis: Ultra Smash at PAX was that it made Tom drop some pretty bad words in the most child friendly booth at the expo. That was real.

You can talk games with Charlie on twitter @clbraith and don’t forget to follow @load_screen and like us on Facebook.

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