Jay Tee Games Alliance. Only For Everyone.

Est. April 2016. III Version 2.0. III





Breaking down barriers.


One of the many highlights from E3 2017 was the boundlessly enthusiastic debut of Josef Fares’ new title A Way Out. The writer / director previously lead the charge on Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons, and has since formed Hazelight Studios in partnership with EA Originals.

The indie focused (and good will generating) initiative funds unique new IP from proven talent; in the case of A Way Out, to the reported tune of $3.7 million in development costs. However, despite the significant wedge of big publisher funding, Hazelight have been given complete creative control to execute their vision of a co-op only, narrative driven adventure.

Fares himself has become an immediately identifiable figure. From his obvious passion for the medium and singular focus on shared play, to his bizarre Oscars rant at the Game Awards, the former motion picture filmmaker is laser focused on getting A Way Out the attention it deserves.

THE BASICS - Third person action adventure that has to be played in co-op, either locally or online. Play as Vincent or Leo, escape prison, and survive in the outside world.

PLATFORMS - PS4, Xbox One, and PC

PLAYERS - Offline - 2 (required), Online - 2 (required)

CO-OP? MULTIPLAYER? - Split screen and online. ‘Friends Pass’ allows for online co-op with one copy of the game.
DOWNLOADABLE CONTENT - None currently announced.

TARPS? - At the bottom of all our previews, you’ll see a series of absurd looking images (with equally stupid, in joke laden names). These are the TARP badges, which represent our ‘Totally Accurate Rating Platform’. They allow us to identify specific things, recognise positive or negative aspects of a games design, and generally indulge our consistent silliness with some visual tomfoolery.


Back of the Box - A broad overview of key features and gameplay mechanics.

Get Schooled - Background info on the developer, fun facts, and viewing the game in a broader context.

Inside Scoop - Random thoughts and musings, along with hopes and concerns.

A key pillar of the games development is that repetition is avoided at all costs. Unique sequences and animations like this won’t appear again later in the story.


The BEST WITH FRIENDS badge is earned if a game is significantly more fun playing with people you know, either in campaign or online.

The PICK UP AND PLAY badge is for when a game is better suited to brief, impromptu sessions that give a quick blast of escapism.

The LONE WOLF badge tells you that a particular game can only be played, or is more enjoyable, when
you’re flying solo.

The DEEP DIVE badge is a heads up that what you’re about to play is a huge undertaking, and best enjoyed in extended periods.

The KITCHEN SINK badge is an indication of a game that is
bursting at the seams with content (either on disc or DLC).

The BAM! DONE! badge lets you know that within minutes of picking up the controller, you can play this like a pro.

The HOT POTATO badge makes a really clear statement: this
game is making waves, and it’s
definitely worth a  look.

The LEARNING CURVE badge is awarded if you’ll need to allow a fair bit of time in
order to fully
grasp the controls.


The SCEPTICAL FACE badge is for when a game doesn’t leave a strong first impression. Perhaps more
time is needed to decide?

The LEFT FIELD badge is awarded when a game surprises us by being really good and it hadn’t previously been on our radar.

The HMM… FIREWORKS badge is earned when a game features excellent particle, lighting, or atmospheric effects.

The BARREL OF LAUGHS badge is for when a game boasts a keen, sharp wit and several laugh out loud moments.

The BIG STINKER badge is awarded when a huge AAA budget title turns out to be a letdown that leaves us feeling cold.  

The BOOTS ON THE GROUND badge is for a game you need to play as soon as possible. Don’t leave this one for your backlog!

The SMALL FRY badge is for a title from a smaller development team that is absolutely worth your time and should not be ignored.

The LOBBY LAG badge is for when the multiplayer side of things is lacking features, and/or runs very poorly.

The SLICK RICK badge is earned when the soundtrack, effects, and / or overall audio design is fantastic across the board.

The COUCH MADNESS badge is awarded when a game nails split/same screen gameplay.

The CAPTAIN KEYES badge is for a game that has memorable, well written characters that leave a lasting impression.

The LAME WAD badge is used in the event a game has particularly bad dialogue or cheesy voice acting that distracts from the story.    

The RE-TARP badge is earned when a game offers more of the same. It’s up to you to decide whether that’s good or bad.

The HOMEBOY badge is for the kind of game that is perfect for playing at home, AND when you’re on the go.  

The MILO & KATE badge is for a game that we don’t think will look the same from reveal to release, or perhaps even see the light of day…  

The MIS-TARPED badge is for a game that’s supposed to represent one genre, but turns into something else.

The SHOVELWARE badge is for something that feels rushed, or launches without key features that would have made a big difference.

The IT’S A TARP! badge is awarded when a game offers a real challenge, in single player and/or multiplayer.

The ON ME! JONESY! badge is earned when getting into a multiplayer game is quick and easy, with a robust matchmaking / party system.

The BREACH ON ZULU badge is awarded for a game that consistently demands intelligent strategy / tactics.

The TRANSPORTER BUFFER badge is for a game that requires you to carefully manage your inventory and supplies.

The JUST ONE MINUTE MAN badge is for a game that keeps making you come back for just one more go.

The TOO MANY TARPS badge is awarded when a game has a lot of content, but no real substance or depth.

The JUMPED THE TARP badge is for a game that has had one too many sequels, and should be radically rebooted or retired completely.

The PICK N’ MIX badge is awarded for a game that has a wide variety of things to do, or continually presents new mechanics / ideas.  

The SCRATCH THAT RASH badge is for a game you should take a risk on. You might love it!  

The HYPE-O-SPRAY badge is for a game that has, or may yet become, a victim of its own hype.

The 1, 2, DITCH badge is for a game that has been poorly explained and/or received a lot of bad press.

The BOOGEYMAN TWO badge is for a game with a collection of strong, varied enemies to face.

The SEA OF THIEVES badge is for a co-op game that is truly memorable.

The WEAPON DROP badge is for a game that features superb weapon / item design.

The YOSHI’S EYELIDS badge is for a game where the facial animation leaves much to be desired…

The BREAK THE TARGETS badge is for a game that has excellent side quests and/or optional missions and activities.

The YAR! BEARS! badge is for a game that is played (or should be played) by Adam Burleigh.

The SHODDY CODDY badge is for a game includes mechanics or controls that just don’t feel right.

The TROLLOLOL badge is for a game with sudden spikes in difficulty.

The WAGGLE YOUR LIPS badge is for a game with terrible pacing and/or too often takes control away from the player.

The KABOOM! badge is for a game that has excellent explosions (with Halo 1 frag grenades being the gold standard).

The PUMPKIN LOOK badge is for a game where the art style, graphics, and/or presentation are on top form.

The FALCO FEEL badge is earned when the gameplay mechanics, controls, and/or learning curve feel just right.

The POPPY SOUND badge is for a game where the music, sound effects, and/or dialogue are superb.

The POM POM EXPERIENCE badge is earned when a game produces numerous great anecdotes or stories.

The QUANTUM OF SOLACE badge is for a game that is played (or should be played) by Mike Hazleton.

The DEALBREAKER badge is for a game where one or two crucial mis-steps is enough to put you off.

The SARU’S GANGLIA badge is for a game that does a great job of immersing you in its world.

The FADING CIRCLE badge is for a game with extremely poor environmental interactivity and/or object physics.

The SCRIPT SUPERVISOR badge is for a game with incredibly quotable dialogue.

The BEVERLY badge is for a game so good that it would make even Jean-Luc Picard want to spend time with Wesley.

The WII SPORTS badge is for a game that even non-gamers would recognise as being something truly special.

The BUFF TING badge is for a game that has an excessive number of patches, or requires a huge day 1 update.

The LEAVES ON THE LINE badge is for a game where awkwardly placed geometry and/or bad level design causes you to get unintentionally stuck.

The DISCO TECH badge is for a mini game compilation or party game that’s (perhaps surprisingly) really good!

The OOKLA badge is for a game with inconsistent server performance and/or frequent lag.

The LOOT ON THE ROOT badge is for a game with lots of different collectibles, items, and other bits and pieces.

The OOBLEH! badge is for a game that has a dodgy or inconsistent framerate.

The DIGITAL FOUNDRAJON badge is for a game that pushes technical boundaries with cutting edge presentation.

The ATOUBA badge is for a game that features a loveable character (or characters).

The IT WORKS SO WELL badge is for a game with characters you’re truly invested in.

The CLONE WARS badge is for a game with lots of repeated character models.

The JASON DUFNER badge is for a game with a limited choice of playable characters.

The CONGLOMERATE badge is for a game where characters frequently clip through surfaces.

The CLOONEY badge is for a game with outstanding character design.

The SKYPE RINGTONE badge is for a game with a catchy soundtrack that you can’t help but love.

The WAR-ROCK! badge is for a game that absolutely deserves ongoing player support.

The LAWBREAKERS badge is for a game that is unlikely to get long term player support.

The EPIC RESPAWN badge is for a game with superb post launch developer support.

The TEARS OF BORE badge is for a series that just needs a break. Please. Just stop.

The NOOB COMBO badge is for a game that lacks balance in multiplayer.

The SPIDERWICK CHRONICLES badge is for a game that unnecessarily restricts co-op and/or multiplayer.

The JACK CARVER badge is for a game with stereotypical or unimaginative characters.

The ROMULAJON badge is for a game that is played (or should be played) by
Jay Tee.

The BLEEDING EYES badge is for a game where bump mapping doesn’t happen as often as you might think…

The BEN’S PISS CUP badge is for inexcusably lazy game design that both confuses and infuriates.

The MOLYNEUX’S LIES badge is for a game which fails to deliver on basic promised features.

The ROLL THE DICE badge is for a game surrounded by easily avoidable controversy.

The THEY’VE FU**ED IT badge is for a game that really should have been so much better…

The TEN DAY RETURNS badge is for a game so disappointing you wish you could get your money back.


WE GOT THIS - Whether you’re playing together on a couch, or connecting online, A Way Out revels in messing with traditional split screen perspectives. You’ll frequently come across moments where one player is in a cutscene, while the other is free to move around in normal gameplay. Alternate angles, side scrolling perspectives, and shared screen framing also feature throughout.

VARIETY IS MY JAM - Each scenario in the game can be tackled in multiple different ways, but Vincent and Leo (the protagonists) aren’t necessarily tied to one particular option. Dialogue choices, key branches in the narrative, and environmental interactivity are used heavily to convey a sense of player controlled momentum.

THE GOOD OLD DAYS - The story takes place in the 70’s, apparently to limit the available technology for players.

FAMILY AFFAIR - Josef Fares did a huge amount of the motion capture movement and stunt work himself. His brother, Fares Fares, is a well known Swedish-Lebanese actor and plays Leo in the game. He has appeared in the Ryan Reynolds action thriller Safe House, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, and is soon to appear in Season 2 of Westworld.

FUNKY FRESH - There aren’t many (if any?) games out in the wild that make co-operative play a mandatory requirement. The design philosophy behind A Way Out came from Fares’ frustration with drop in / drop out experiences, that segregated players in situations where one had progressed further than the other.

LOOKING AHEAD - Fun fact: Now that A Way Out has gone gold, Hazelight are hiring for their next project. E3 2018 tease?  

MEASURING JUG - Game length is something that really doesn’t bother me. If I’ve paid £50 for a game that lasts only a matter of hours, but I had an incredible time throughout, then that’s £50 well spent in my books. That being said, it has been tough to get a read on A Way Out’s estimated size. Rumour has it that you break out from prison quite early on…

FUTURE PLANS - You’re going to spend a lot of time digging deep with these two characters. Their motivations and backstory are key to the whole experience. Vincent is the thinker; cool under pressure. Leo is the hot head; brash and cocky. The big question: is
A Way Out a self contained story, or a set up for future adventures?

BOLD MOVE - The ‘Friends Pass’, that lets you play online, even when you only own one copy of the game… a stroke of genius.