Nex Machina

Housemarque has just made the game of its career.

Key events

In the early weeks of its life, the PS3 was Super Stardust HD. That's how I remember it anyway. And when the PS4 came around, it turned out that the PS4 was Resogun. The news today that low sales have forced Housemarque, who made both these games, to declare that 'Arcade is dead' lends all of these memories a bittersweet tinge. And yet - and I mean this as the highest compliment I can come up with - it's hard to have too many emotions around games like Super Stardust and Resogun, other than panic and excitement - extreme, panoramic excitement. Bittersweet melancholy doesn't stick about for long.

Nex Machina review

Good arcade designers often work with four words buzzing around in their brains: What Would Jarvis Do? Jarvis - and I hope I don't need to explain this - refers to Eugene Jarvis, and he's amongst the greatest twitch game designers of all time. With Defender, he created a coin-op legend, a game so overwhelming in its flair and complexity and sheer visual impact that people would drop money into its innards just to witness the explosion that erupted when they died. With Robotron, a broken hand lead to the creation of the first properly implemented twin-stick shooter system in games - you move with one joystick and aim with the other. No fire button needed, because Robotron was relentless.

Nex Machina

Publisher: Housemarque

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Housemarque and Eugene Jarvis' Nex Machina has a release date

Nex Machina, the promising-looking twin-stick shooter from Housemarque and Eugene Jarvis, will launch for PC and PlayStation 4 on 20th June.

Today's release date announcement is accompanied by the reveal of local co-op - perhaps not too surprising given the old-school arcade nature of the project.

Watch new co-op footage below:

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Digital FoundryNex Machina's high-tech twin-stick magic tested on PC

Digital Foundry checks out the evolved Resogun engine operating at full 4K.

A collaboration between arcade genius Eugene Jarvis and developer Housemarque, Nex Machina takes the voxel-based technology pioneered in the brilliant Resogun and significantly enhances it to deliver an action-packed experience filled with destruction. Backing away from the 30fps approach taken in its prior twin-stick shooter, Alienation, Nex Machina doubles down on 60Hz, taking Resogun's technology to the next level. It's looking great, something we can comfortably say having spent the last few days playing a beta version of the PC version.

Nex Machina is getting a closed PC beta this month

Super Stardust and Resogun developer Housemarque is hosting a closed beta for its upcoming twin-stick shooter Nex Machina.

Running from 21st April through 1st May, this PC beta will be available to "a few hundred participants" chosen at random. As such, your chances of getting in are on the slim side, but you might as well toss your hat into the ring, should you have a kit that can run it.

On that note, here are the game's PC system requirements at the moment (which are subject to change as the game is not yet fully optimised):

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FeatureThe 50 most exciting games of 2017

50 games! Good ones, too!

Video games, 'ey? They're alright, and we're willing to wager that there will be quite a few of them in 2017. Some of them might even be quite good! The next 12 months will be dominated by new hardware such as Microsoft's Scorpio and Nintendo's Switch, but as ever it's the games that really matter, and here's a list of the 50 we're most excited about.

Feature'The bug isn't good enough'

How an arcade legend returned to the genre he invented.

Eugene Jarvis is talking a mile a minute, standing on the show floor at the PlayStation Experience in the unnatural and on-brand blue light within Anaheim's Convention Centre while overlooking his first foray into arcade shooters in well over 20 years, Housemarque's Nex Machina. He's already been talking for 30 minutes before I remember to hit the record button on my dictaphone, our animated chat about Donald Cammell's twisted sci-fi horror film Demon Seed while Jarvis waxed lyrical over the film's shape-shifting robo-cock lost to the ether.