Sexy Parodius

Sexy Parodius box

Sexy Parodius

I’ve played a lot of strange games in my time, but it has been a while since I have constantly yelled out WTF during gameplay. Sexy Parodius is an arcade shooter made by Konami and from the research I did is the fifth and last in the series. Sexy Parodius is a parody of the Gradius series with a lot of strange enemies, bosses, oh and sexual innuendo.

Sexy Parodius screenshot
Sexy Parodius screenshot

Now my version was not in English, but from what I was able to tell an evil octopus is taking items from different people and it is your job to get them back. You can choose from a team of characters including sexy bunny sisters Hikaru and Akane, Takosuke the Octopus, Koitsu the stickman.

Sexy Parodius screenshot
Sexy Parodius screenshot

Some characters have a normal looking ship while others, like stickman, ride a paper airplane. As stated this is a side-scrolling shooter so your main job is to avoid enemy incoming fire and take them down. However, the enemies can be everything from flying foxes to cows being flung out of a jar that says milk. At the end of each level you come up against a boss and once you defeat it you can move on.

Sexy Parodius screenshot

In the video I only completed the first level, but from there it get’s, uh, sexy. The enemies and bosses change to things like skimpily clad women and it makes me wonder why would you want to shoot that.

Sexy Parodius screenshot

Sexy Parodius is one of those games that would be even better drunk or perhaps that is how the game was imagined, I don’t know. Sexy Parodius was released to the arcades in 1996 and ported over to the Sony Playstation and Sega Saturn. In 2007 it was ported to the PSP.

Final Fantasy XIV: Release & Pricing

Final Fantasy XIV concept box
Final Fantasy XIV concept box

Square Enix announced that the PC version of FF14 will be released on September 22nd and 30th respectively. Currently there are two versions available the standard edition which will retail for $49.99 and the collector’s edition which will cost $74.99.

The collector’s edition will be launching first on the 22nd of September and will come with an early access code that will give you a six day head start. In addition you will receive a Behind the scenes DVD, Buddy Pass Insert, “Right of Passage” voucher, In Game Item, Branded Security Token, and Travel Journal and of course the game disc and 30 days of gameplay.

The subscription cost is $12.99 per month and an additional $3.00 for every extra character on the account up to eight in total. You will receive however a “retainer” character that is non-playable but can hold additional items and be used as storage, the term “Bank Alt” comes to mind here. This feature is free for the first one and a $1.00 for each additional.

The beta is set to go live sometime in July and pre-orders begin today. When you pre-order you will receive Garlond Goggles with the standard edition and an Onion Helm for the collector’s edition.

Now some bad news for PS3 fans, the console version will not be released until March 2011. Sorry guys.

Superfrog review

superfrog

Every 16-bit platform of yesteryear had their own unique best selling point. Quite often being a platformer game for that matter. Two main ones – SNES and Genesis had Mario and Sonic games respectively. Both very different to each other yet both awesome in their own ways. So, when others back in the early 90’s had tons of fun breaking their pads playing those, don’t think that I didn’t… Actually I didn’t as I had an Amiga 500 and neither SNES nor Genesis back then. That said I was not a sad bastard looking enviously at other people’s machines hoping to be invited for a game or two. Hell, no! I had my own ace down my own sleeve and it was no worst to the earlier two… In fact in some ways it could be considered a superior game!

In the heavenly year of our Lord, 1993, on Amiga and a mere year later on PC, widely known back then Developer forward slash Publisher – Team17 – of (currently Worms titles but then…) Project-X, Apidya I & II, Alien Breed I & II, Body Blows & Body Blows Galactic fame, amongst other great games, released a true gem – an answer to Sonic & Mario that Amiga owners needed and thrived for (and PC owners did not give a damn about as they had Wolfenstein 3D). That year a legend was born…

Project F? Nah…

Superfrog - a frog that every toads wants to be and also coincidentally an Amiga title screen...

The game leaves you in charge of – surprise, surprise – Superfrog – a once prince turned into a green hero on a mission to save his loved princess from alzheimer & dementia driven hands of each superhero’s of the era arch villain – the Mad Witch. Well, can’t tell you what was her exact name but she was a witch and was bad judging from an awesome intro that the Amiga version greets the player with.

Well, putting the story aside as it’s obvious it was not the story that gave Sonic & Mario their deserved fame – Sperfrog could be considered to be quite generic example of the platformer. Could be, but it wasn’t… Both PC and Amiga versions look and play virtually the same with an earlier mentioned difference of Amiga outing having an incredible cartoon-style intro drawn by once famous Eric Shwartz.

Is it a bird!? Is it a plane!? Nah… It ain’t!

And this is were the fun's at... Well, this and some more...

The main game is divided between five levelsForest, Castle, Circus, Pyramids & Ice – each built out of four stages and then there’s also a secret Space stage and a Moon level. I’ve mentioned Mario & Sonic games before as I’d like to use them as examples or even standards here, that I would then compare Superfrog to. It’s not going to be an easy task and I would not wanted this piece of writing to end up as a review of those two games, so I will mix and match some colorful screenshots here so it appears as if I’m still reviewing widely unknown Superfrog… Nah! I’m just fu… I mean playing with you all, it’s still gonna be a Superfrog review…

Because what made Mario & Sonic great is what makes Superfrog an underrated contender that should’ve been a champion amongst all three. Both console titles had beautiful graphics, excellent and well thought through level design, loads of collectibles and tons of fun to add to it all. How does our toad-face friend stack against them? I’d say he’s got some serious ground to defend and I don’t see him losing to any of the games in any of the fields mentioned…

You gotta face the facts! The game is AWESOME-tastic(tm)!

There are only three Rules of Survival(tm) in Superfrog... Or one three-pieced rule... If it moves or is sharp or you have no clue what it is - it will most likely kill you!

Superfrog’s graphics literally squeeze out everything that’s possible out of vanilla Amiga computers whilst keeping a solid framerate of 50 screens per second in a resolution of 320×256 on Amiga and 320×240 pixels on PC. Genesis by standard displays its games at 320×224 and SNES does at 256×224 pixels resolution. So, Amiga and PC do offer slightly higher resolution than Genesis and noticeably higher than SNES. But wait! That’s not all…

Arguably SNES displayed the most – 256 colors on the screen at once in its games and Genesis64, whilst Amiga in most cases only 32. Superfrog and mastermind geniuses of evil – Team17 – behind it however, managed to pull as much as they could out of hardware and the game runs at 64 colors, as well as Genesis titles do. Those colors are so smartly picked, mixed and rotated though that it looks as if there were many more… So, in theory whilst being similar to Genesis it does look bit less colorful than some of SNES games do. But I shouldn’t judge the book by it’s cover… And I shall not judge the games purely by their visuals either! …Today.

Amiga offered the highest resolution out of all platforms… Well, so what!? It still lost in the long run…

It's so cold that I froze my frog off... WOW! That comment is just SO lame...

Both console classics are well known for their ingenious level designs… Mario’s are smartly laid out and often require skills of the Dark Side’s degree and loads of patience and repetition to complete. And Sonic’s are built with speed of gameplay in mind. Superfrog is more on the earlier one’s side. The stages are vast and filled with many monsters (well, I wouldn’t wanna call those cute creatures monsters but they kill you, so I can’t settle just for cute either), traps, collectibles and switches and also often require for a player to reach within the earlier mentioned Dark Side of the Force to stand a chance at beating each of the latter levels… You will find plenty of hidden areas as well, especially in Castle and Pyramid levels and discovering all will not be an easy task at all – so Superfrog holds a lot of re-playability to it.

In gameplay area Superfrog does not lack either – there’s something new introduced with each stage so it continues being involving and whilst it’s easy to pick up and play it’s hard to master and VERY hard to beat! So, finding all of the secret areas and collecting all the treasures (gold, crowns, coins, fruit, etc. and my most favourite drinks of all time – Lucozade Orange – Hell yeah!) will surely take a lot of both – time & effort. There are no warps to latter levels as in Mario games, so you have to complete the game stage after stage but there is a password system and those can be won using collected coins in an arcade like mini games between levels… There’s also power ups that offer unique abilities to our hero – like flying or throwing green goo-ish looking creatures of a yo-yo-like characteristic at the enemies… Sounds odd? Well, play the damn game! You’ll love it anyway and also you’ll know what I’m talking about here!

The technique is to jump over the sharp bit… Or kneel down below it. Or Die. It’s really a game of choice!

It's not gambling if you KNOW that you ain't gonna win!

It’s real hard to summarize it all (and more that I did not mention not to spoil the game), to depict Superfrog as being a truly AWESOME game. I’m afraid that you’re just gonna have to take my word for it. And judging just by it, screenshots and maybe a feel for adventure you will give Superfrog a try… Because when you do, you won’t regret it! It’s a unique and challenging game (with one of the first ad-in-game placements – Lucozade Orange yo!) that could’ve been Amiga’s answer to Mario and Sonic if only the platform and game were half as popular as the two main 16bit consoles were… Sadly Superfrog whilst being moderately successful never reached the attention it deserved and was a hugely underrated production. If things were different I may have been writing here about Superfrog III – Revenge of the Toad or Superfrog VII – Frogs in Space but we won’t know that as the game never really got a chance to stretch its wings…

Sonic-speed transport system as presented by ACME. Sounds

This is the end... My froggy-friend, the end... The screenshot does not show the end though but to know it you would have to play it, you know...

Stunts (a.k.a. 4D Sports Driving)

When I was just a young boy and have seen today’s review’s game for the first time on my friend’s Amiga I knew I had to have it. In fact I wanted it more than badly! I needed it as one needs to find a toilet after a huge plate of burritos followed up by a gallon of sweet cider… It’s obvious however, that when you’re that young and have cravings for something, you have your ways of getting it… Begging parents to buy it for you, borrowing money from a friend or even be it finding a way of obtaining an illegal copy… Whatever means were necessary, for this game were well justified!

4D Sports Driving

Stunts (in Europe known as 4D Sports Driving – now how dull & silly sounding title that one is!) was one of those games that revolutionized its genre by being well ahead of its time, but I’ll get into this in a minute. The game was developed by Distinctive Software and released by Broderbund Software on PC & Amiga in late 1990. Just like my little sister, developed by my father and released in 1990 by my mother… Just like that! ^__^

Anyway, who has at least a vague knowledge of personal computer history, knows well that it was still the time when Amiga was the „King of the Hill” and packed most gaming power of all early 90’s platforms. PC VGA card’s 256 colour mode was not extensively used yet, so Amiga games stood out as better looking ones out of all 16bit Computer ports… Stunts was a fresh breeze of „new” in already well established by then Racing genre. What we expect to find in games today and feel as if it’s usual to have it was not as common in 1990 and Stunts by bringing a plate of those little changes to the racing games table changed the way we „dine” forever…

First of all there were multiple cars to choose from – all with various stats and specs, and all handled different to one another. There were not 40, 50 or 60 of them but more than a typical by then – „three or less”. 11 to be precise. It’s obvious that just having a bunch of cars thrown into a game does not make for an awesome racer but people at Distinctive Software knew that well and made sure that Stunts was not only a car showcase but also a bottomless bag of goods for all speed freaks…

With loads of different cars a Real Player needs variety in tracks as well, to keep him/her occupied. Devs could just drop a bunch of those on players and keep them happy for a relatively long time but they didn’t. In fact there was not a huge number of those but it made no difference nonetheless as Stunts took another, as time proved, much better route. There may have been only few tracks to choose from but they were really smartly laid out and what’s even more important & crucial here…

…they were ridden all over by numerous obstacles like ramps, corkscrews, loops, jumps, iced paving and many more to keep the game more challenging and raise the gameplay excitement in the same time. Sounds fun? It is! But you know what? There were many games that were fun and never made it big… Many! So, what exactly could push Stunts to stand out by a long mile ahead of the competition? Well, maybe…

…first EVER racing game Track Editor? Maybe? Nah! For sure! It was simple yet a powerful tool that allowed user to use all elements available in official tracks in their creations. Needless to say many of those quickly sprout out amongst players who challenged themselves to make the most daring or challenging tracks to play. By today (nearly 20 years later), there’s several thousands of these and the game whilst being only 8 years younger than me is still as playable as it was on a day of its release and much more fun than I could ever be. I wanna hear a loud „Hell Yeah!” here. ^__^

If that all was not much enough, Stunts also introduced something of similar characteristics to well-known achievements of today’s games. A player was not allowed to use all the cars from the beginning or play against all opponents, he had to slowly work his way up the „Racing Food Chain(tm)” to unlock tougher drivers and better rides. Now, ain’t that a lot of fun!?

Stunts was also first game to take place in full 3D environment with everything being built out of 3D polygons – tracks, cars, jumps, trees & buildings… You get the picture by now, I hope. ^__^ Now, in 1990 it was not a common practice… In fact, most people even did not think possible of having a 3D game running smoothly on a vanilla Amigas, yet alone a racing game. But then somebody (who knew nothing about that notion) came and just done it. Figures! Well done Distinctive Software, well done!! As one would expect from a truly „Groundbreaking Wind of Change(tm)” in Gaming World all that can be seen from various camera views and recorded as Replay to share amongst friends or prey on their weaknesses by showing them your Mad Gaming Skills… And nothing says more „Great Game” than being able to destroy your friend’s self esteems by beating them time after time in an awesome racer on tracks that you have made yourself just for the purpose alone! It’s like taking a Lolly Pop from a child, but more fun.

I know it may appear as if I am a bit over excited but just imagine for a second that it’s not 2010 no more, but humble 1990 and most games (Stunts alike) run in 16 colors in 320 x 200 resolution and not 1920 x 1080 in 16 Millions of shades with 3D acceleration, Depth of Field, Z-buffers, Fog and other numerous graphical effects which names tell me no more than a calorie count on a box of Rice Crispies… Also, try to visualize what one gets to experience after playing countless hours in racing games on flat gray surfaces filled with 2D sprites with three or even no cars to choose from (and usually they only looked different but handled identically) when one’ve seen Stunts in its full 3D glory!? I, for one was stunned at seeing Stunts and could not say much more than „awesome”. I know, I know, I’ve overused this word by now in my previous reviews and that’s alright as all those games were in fact awesome as well. But did they change their genres for years to come to the same degree Stunts did? I think that you realize by now that the answer can only be… No.

Games Coming Out For PC July 2010

Starcraft 2 marine
Starcraft 2 marine

Games Coming Out For PC July 2010

This list doesn’t include every single little game that comes out this month, only what catches my eye.

Monkey Island 2 Special Edition: LeChuck’s Revenge, July 7

A graphical and aural remake of this classic adventure game of the Monkey Island series. Will probably appeal to people who did not play the original the first time around.

Disciples III: Renaissance, July 13

The Disciples games are a lot of fun if you like games that are fantasy turn-based strategy games similar to Master of Magic and Heroes of Might and Magic.

Mytheon, July 13

Let’s see how the live non-beta version of this action based mythology MMO fares…

Need For Speed World, July 20

Will it be more like Need For Speed Motor City or will it be a glorified Burnout Paradise clone?

I will surely play this play for free MMO racing game. Let’s see if they can make something that has repeat play value.

StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty, July 27

If you are a PC gamer and you don’t know what StarCraft is, you have been living in a pocket dimension (make that dementia). Expect productivity in Korea to drop to zero on July 27 and video game related deaths to go up!

Jason “Generalvivi” Mojica: Raven Software

Raven Software logo

Name: Jason “Generalvivi” Mojica.

Title: Level Designer

Company: Raven Software

Favorite Classic Game: Super Metroid

Quote: (Super Metroid) has some of the best game design I’ve ever seen. I really enjoyed how you would find a new weapon that would open up more paths in older areas. It also had some really awesome platforming sections and crazy over the top bosses. There were also tons of secrets to find and upgrades to get. Just a great game all around!


GAMES COMING OUT JULY 2010 FOR CONSOLES

Ah July, the time for weddings, bbq, fireworks and general outdoor fun or you can skip all that and just play some video games because a number of good ones are being released for consoles for the upcoming month.

Crackdown 2 – July 6th

Crackdown 2 Xbox box
Crackdown 2 Xbox box

There’s nothing better that powers and a badge except being able to mow down zombies all night long. In Crackdown 2 one of the coolest new features is the “Night mode” where the zombies or “freaks” come out and bring a whole new challenge to our super cop.

Need for Speed World – July 20th

Need For Speed World box
Need For Speed World box

If you haven’t already check out Obsolete Gamers interview with Jean-Charles Gaudechon from EA Blackbox on Need for Speed World. In NFSW you will be able to race online with your friends and build your collection of cars all for free up until level 10. Combining online play with a social structure that connects you to sites like Facebook and Twitter all in the world of Need for Speed is defiantly a winning combination.

Arc Rise Fantasia – July 20th

Arc Rise Fantasia Wii box cover
Arc Rise Fantasia Wii box cover

For fans of Japaneese-style role-playing games Arc Rise Fantasia coming to the Wii might just make your summer. Arc was released about a year ago in Japan and is now coming to the U.S. The game looks pretty good on the Wii and offers two CG cut-scenes and tons of voice acted dialog. The turn-based fighting is also well done with vibrant colors and animation.

Chuck E. Cheese’s Party Games

Chuck E. Cheese’s Party Games Wii box cover
Chuck E. Cheese’s Party Games Wii box cover

Look honey, you can have all the fun of Chuck E. Cheese in your own home on the Wii! Now all you have to do is order some pizza and you can relive your thirteenth birthday. What do you mean you want to go live with your father?

Alright so console wise July is a little weak. Perhaps it is because they want you to get outside and do some exercises or something. Maybe Honorabili will have something better to offer with his review on PC games coming out in July, if not there’s always the new seasons of Futurama and Entourage.

Gamer Profile: Jace Hall

[youtube id=”_v9D_vDBE40″ width=”633″ height=”356″]

Kaboom is my favorite because it is literally the personification of the adage, “Easy to learn, difficult to master.” Plus, no one can beat me at it. 🙂 ~Jace Hall

 Jace Hall

Favorite Classic Game: KABOOM

 The Jace Hall Show: Season 5: Felicia Day Returns & I Play WoW Redux

[youtube id=”D1MOICO7B50″ width=”633″ height=”356″]

The Interview

Obsolete Gamer: The concept for the Jace Hall show came from the intertwining of Hollywood and the video game culture, but could you tell us a bit more about the reason you decided to do this show?

Jace Hall: I spent 15 years creating and developing video games. I grew up playing video games. I still play video games to this day. Since I truly am from the “video game culture” it has always bothered me that the “mainstream” media culture tends to depict the video game industry in somewhat superficial and negative ways.

The truth is that people who either play or make games are just like everyone else! There is a wide range of people who are gamers, and most of them don’t look like the way Hollywood depicts them.

So I thought, here I am leaving the active game development industry to attempt to make movies and television shows in traditional Hollywood, while at the same time continuing to play games and hang out with my game industry friends… I was experiencing a unique culture clash between two industries and I thought it might be interesting to capture some of the moments with a video camera. And so The Jace Hall Show was born!

To me, the culture of video games is all about lifestyle and attitude. Its not about any one particular game. It’s more about the shared experience of gaming and people bonding and communicating through that common experience.

For instance, the desire to throw a video game controller is a common experience for any game player. We all know this, and this tiny little fact becomes part of the greater tapestry of gamer culture. It is literally thousands of these kinds of unique understandings that combine to support the lifestyle and attitude that I call “GamerLife.”

Traditional Hollywood does not have the same reference points. Hollywood culture is fundamentally different, and a lot of it can sometime be rooted in fear and image control. This results in a cult of personality type of lifestyle and attitude.

It’s been fascinating and a great learning experience to be able to watch these two different cultures interact, and The Jace Hall Show attempts to show a tiny window into this new frontier.

The Jace Hall Show

Obsolete Gamer: What is the process for finding people to interview both celebrities and people in the industry?

Jace Hall: It just a natural process of what is happening around me and my company. The Jace Hall Show follows the interests of Jace Hall! So if somebody somewhere is doing something that me or my team thinks is cool, we will see if we can go check it out and possibly interview whomever that is.

Our show is not journalism. It is not unbiased. It’s whatever we happen to want it to be at the time, and is fairly free form. The consistency that you see in the show is nothing more than a reflection of the fact that every episode is made by the same people. We are just glad that the audience seems to like what we do.

Obsolete Gamer: What was your favorite interview?

Jace Hall: The Dolph lundgren / Carl Weathers interview was awesome because here are two guys sitting next to me who directly influenced my childhood, but generally speaking I don’t have a favorite. I like them all and I’m really appreciative of anyone who is nice enough to take the time to come be on the show in the first place.!

Obsolete Gamer: Name someone you haven’t interviewed yet, but would really want to for your show?

Jace Hall: Arnold Schwarzenegger, because, I mean come on, his last name is built into the Microsoft Word Spell Checker for goodness sakes! I’d also include Sylvester Stallone, because he is very underrated considering his accomplishments and I’d want to highlight just how amazing his work is (and then whip his ass in MORTAL KOMBAT.)

Obsolete Gamer: If you could do a Jace Hall show with anyone whom would it be with?

Jace Hall: It would be me, Vin Diesel, Dwanye Johnson (The Rock), and Ludacris – and we would all be driving fast cars and be tough and stuff… Oh wait, I was thinking of the upcoming movie FAST FIVE. My Bad.

The-Jace-Hall-Show

The Jace Hall Show

Be sure to check out our other celebrity gamer profiles.

Game Music: A Love Affair

Mario with Rock Star Guitar
Mario with Rock Star Guitar

While working on the new music player for the website I began thinking about some of the game music that really, dare I say, moved me. These were more than background songs they were an important part of the game or the specific level or zone. The music I am talking about is the kind that stays in your head long after you stopped playing. It is the type of tune you would play in your car or music device. So allow me a moment to talk about some of my favorite video game music from the world of consoles.

Wood Carving Partita -The Library: Castlevania Symphony of The Night

Castlevania Symphony of the Night screenshot
Castlevania Symphony of the Night screenshot

Wood Carving Partita – The Library: Castlevania Symphony of The Night

All the music from SOTN was excellent and to this day I still listen to it from time to time. However, there was just something about the music when you entered the library. The classic overtones just mixed in so well with the Dracula theme. It was truly a signature theme that, to me, stood out from all the other excellent music from this first rate game.

Julia – Final Fantasy VIII

Julia – Final Fantasy VIII
Julia – Final Fantasy VIII

Julia – Final Fantasy VIII

While many fans did not believe FF8 was a worthy successor to FF7 it was well done in its own right and had quite a few memorable songs. One of my favorites was Julia. Julia Heartilly was a pianist and a love interest for the character Laguna. The song is actually a piano arrangement of the games main theme song, Eyes on Me. Maybe it is because my sister played classical piano, but I really liked this one, it set a perfect tone for the flashback and helped me to enjoy the main version even more.

Parasite Eve 2-Forbidden Power (Aya’s theme)

Parasite Eve 2 – Forbidden Power (Aya’s theme)
Parasite Eve 2 – Forbidden Power (Aya’s theme)

Parasite Eve 2 -Forbidden Power (Aya’s theme)

Not to sound like a Square fanboi but Parasite Eve was one of those great games that did not get the credit it deserved. Now I will admit that part two was not as good as the original, but I did really like the main theme remixed from the original with a harder, rock guitar beat to it. This theme mixed with the intro cinematic’s got me hyped to play.

Starfox 64 – Corneria

Starfox 64 – Corneria
Starfox 64 – Corneria

Starfox 64 – Corneria

I played this game so much that I could beat it on hard without anyone losing health or myself dying, with my eyes closed. Okay, so my eyes were open, but I owned this game and the theme music for the first stage started me off on the right track. It made you feel you were going into battle and you were going to kick some ass. Sometimes I load this one up just to play the first level, hear the music and lay some smackdown.

Sonic CD – Wacky Workbench (Past)

Sonic CD – Wacky Workbench (Past)
Sonic CD – Wacky Workbench (Past)

Sonic CD – Wacky Workbench (Past)

You know I can’t even explain why I like this theme so much but I do. There was just something about it that felt classic. Sonic CD was the best thing to come out of the Sega CD and it had some great music to boot, but this one stood out for me.

Now there are a ton of other themes I love and these don’t necessarily rank in any particular order, but they are definitely up there. Now it’s your turn. What are some of your favorite video game music themes?

The Obsolete Gamer Show #2

Obsolete Gamer banner
Obsolete Gamer banner

Back again with another podcast this time with a slightly (and I mean slightly) better production value. In this episode J.A. introduces the E3 2010 pimp, showcases the Obsolete Commercial from Japan featuring Crash Bandicoot, gameplay of Temco Bowl, F-Zero and Sonic 2 and a video presentation of the Alienware m11x.

The software crashed right at the end which is the reason for the cut off, good thing we were done anyway.

Arthur Lewis: Alienware

Alienware Performance Systems logo

Arthur_Lewis

Arthur Lewis – Alienware

Name: Arthur Lewis

Title: President, Alienware Corporation & GM Dell Gaming at Alienware

Company: Alienware

Favorite Classic Game: A ton of them

Quote: So this gamer profile is a bit different, Arthur Lewis was kind enough to talk with J.A. Laraque at E3 about his love of classic video games.

Arthur Lewis Gamer Profile Interview


There Are Games On Macs. It’s True!

PC vs Mac Steam
PC vs Mac Steam

For those late to the party, Macs are finally getting some PC gaming love from Valve’s digital gaming distribution service called Steam. With this new cross-platform addition to the Macs arsenal, the chic liberal Starbucks drinking hippies can now play Left 4 Dead 2, Team Fortress 2, Portal, and other Valve games built on Source. For those who weren’t aware, there was an offer to get iPod ear buds for the purchase of a Mac copy of Team Fortress 2 which could carry on to your PC version as well since the Steam Cloud works cross platform. I mention this because it also means that whatever saved state you have on your PC will move over to the Mac and vice versa so you don’t have to start all over again.

One other neat little quirk is that Mac players don’t play with only Mac users as some other games seem to segregate them to their lonesome selves. The battle against the PC and Mac can now take place with more than just words. Someone in your L4D2 team using a Mac? Let a tank flip a car on him while you rush to the safe house. Tired of the shit talkers on the PC talking down to your little apple? Become a spy, pretend to be his friend, sap his sentry and take a nice stab to their back. Finally, the war can be waged.

The scenario I described does sound a bit immature but I assure you that the internet is serious business. From personal experience, playing TF2 since the Mac launch I have seen Mac and PC users alike verbally assault one another in a brutal fashion and even personally attempt to dominate the OSX or Windows lovers specifically. It has brought a new flavor to gaming online in Source games and it’s a welcome rivalry that I think many are glad to finally play a more aggressive stance in. The only downside I find in all of this is when someone asks me if they should buy a Mac I can’t say “There are no games on a Mac.” With World of Warcraft and Source’s amazing multiplayer online games that’s all you’d really need to have as a Mac user. Before someone begins the debate that Call of Duty is better than Team Fortress 2 and that is reason enough to not buy a Mac… you need to eat a bag of dicks. Team Fortress 2 is superior to Call of Duty. I know this may cause some internet rage but that’s my stance on it and if you haven’t given Team Fortress 2 or any Valve games a chance yet you can purchase the entire Valve Library for $66.99 this weekend. That’s 22 games for the PC and 6 are available for the Mac. For those who have yet to play Steam on the Mac, what are you waiting for? Let the shit talking and rocket flying begin!

Rick Dangerous & Rick Dangerous 2

Rickdangerousbox

No time for love, Dr. Jones…” Well, in here there’s always plenty time for passionate and long lasting love, classic video game love that is!

Rick Dangerous – Amiga title screen Rick Dangerous II – Amiga title screen

Anyway, when there’s no Dr. Jones somebody has to step in and take his place and be that smart heroic persona that saves the day, in style. This is exactly where Dr. Dangerous comes in… Well, I’m not sure he’s a doctor but with that kind of surname he bloody sure should be!

Rick Dangerous – Level 1 – Amstrad CPC – Running away from a falling boulder, Indy style…

I realized I cannot review Rick Dangerous without taking a look at Rick Dangerous II – as these games are like Star Wars – sure, you can watch one and have fun but until you’ve seen them all you know nothing of the dark side… Or until you’ll push some LSD with magic mushrooms and few nicely rolled fat spliffs, but that’s just sliding a bit to much of topic here… ^__^

Rick Dangerous – Level 3 – C64

Games of the dark side (I should trade mark that statement!) that Rick Dangerous 1 & 2 surely are, were developed by Core Design and Published by Microplay in 1989 & 1990 respectively, on most major systems of the time – Amiga, PC, Atari ST, Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum & Amstrad CPC. And even though these computers all had different capabilities and limitations the game plays equally awesome on all of them and only benefits from slightly higher resolution and bigger sprites in better colors on more advanced ones.

Rick Dangerous II – Level 3 – Atari ST

The adventures take place in undisclosed early years of the 20th Century where you’re in control of British chap going by the name of Bond, James Bond. I’m sorry, I must have been stuck on the game’s similarities to a certain movie series – of course you play as somebody else… Jones, Indiana Jones. Ehm… I mean… Dangerous, Rick Dangerous! That’s more like it! Anyway, the similarities of Rick and Indy are many and they’re more than obvious – both Rick & Indy are adventurers seeking forgotten treasures and fighting bad guys for a living, and also they both sport hats & brown leather jackets, so popular in the early 1900’s. Now, that’s enough to become an heroic icon in my books!

Rick Dangerous – Level 2 – ZX Spectrum

As Rick, in both games, you’re bound to go through hundreds of screens – most of time each being a separate part of a bigger level – of blood, sweat and tons of swearing. Rick Dangerous with its hellish unforgiving laugh-in-a-player’s-face difficulty makes other tough games look like a kindergarten toys. In fact there were times when I thought that the game was punishing me just for playing it! Not many games have that kind of, ehm… …incentive to them, but that said it actually works quite well as inspite of being hard as my auntie’s cookies are – Rick holds tons of “just one more screen and I’ll go to bed” gameplay to it.

Rick Dangerous II – Level 2 – PC DOS – PC outing of RDII could work in two different graphic modes – CGA and VGA, with pallettes of 16 and 256 colors respectively, even though the game never really used all 256 colors.

Each level consists of numerous places and ways that your character can part with his life, and for that matter – he will! Constantly, time after time, playthrough after playthrough! Rick Dangerous is one of those games that back in the days of its release caused joystick manufacturers to see huge increase in profits. Not that there were so many users playing it and wearing controllers out but if others reacted to the game similar to how I did – their joysticks also ended up in pieces thrown at the wall. All of them, one after another, in one sitting… Yeah, I know, that was pretty stupid & lame… But so was I.

Rick Dangerous – Level 4 – PC DOS – CGA mode…

You are not helpless however – you have your wits, charm, adventurers 6th sense and also if the earlier ones are not enough – a gun & some explosives to help you go through each area. Both, bullets and explosives are limited though, so you’ll find yourself often stuck between an easy way to complete a difficult task or an unknown that may end up fatal because of you not having any means of defense. The sooner you’ll learn how to properly utilise and save these tools of the adventurers trade the sooner the game will grow on you as you’ll be able to complete a stage without dying in same spot more times than you have fingers… And toes… Put together.

Rick Dangerous II – Level 4 – C64 – Commodore most definitely sported the best looking and most playable out of the all 8bit outings…

I realize that these two games are tough as a year-old doughnut and tend to bring tons of frustration where its not necessary, but maybe it’s because they hold a serious challenge? And challenge is what’s pushes me more and more until I beat the basta… I mean game, until I beat the game! I don’t know the exact reason, but even though Rick Dangerous is as difficult as passing a whale on a toliet – through tears of anger and pain – it will no doubt grow on anyone who’ll spend time learning it’s gameplay mechanics & all the quirks. It’s not a game for everyone as on times it feels as if the Developers took pleasure in laying out incredibly tough obstacles just to see the player fail numerous times but it is a game for everyone to try and see if they’re up to the challenge.

Rick Dangerous II – PC DOS – Rick’s first experiences with ACID… He never listend in school when kids were tought just to say “No”…

Quick Note: I don’t know of any places that the game could be purchased other than eBay but if you just wanna give it a quick whirl, see how it plays, you can always find it either on Abandonia for PC or Planet Emulation for all other platforms, as Rick Dangerous is now considered abandonware. Also below you’ll find intros for both titles – they’re not much but they’re there nonetheless.

Blackthorne (a.k.a. Blackhawk)

Have you ever dreamed of being a lone marauder/renegade whose only true friend was his faithful gun and whose purpose in life was to kill everything that moved within the shooting range? I bet you did… And I know that I haven’t, you psychopath! ^__^ But I don’t mind acting as one in a video game, especially in one as awesome as…

Blackthorne title screen

It was developed by Blizzard Entertainment (currently of Diablo, Starcraft & WOW fame) and released on multiple platforms by Interplay Productions in 1994. And 1994 was a GOOD year! Not only for me finally realizing the obvious difference between men and women but also for games and gamers alike. There were more active gaming platforms than ever before or after, and the sheer amount of games released at and around the year of 1994 left players witch many gems to pick from which was good but also caused Blackthorne to go by largely unnoticed…

And I have been preparing to write this review all my life… Or last five minutes… Whatever.

I’ve decided to try a bit different approach and instead of telling you what is the game’s current state of affairs genesis, I’ll include a video intro, so you can see it for yourself and then proceed with reading…

Now, since you’ve went through this quite decent intro, we can continue… ^__^

Blackthorne (a.k.a. Blackhawk – European title) is like Flashback on steroids. On some levels it’s a better game as it’s more action oriented and easier to follow in terms of both plot and puzzles, on others it lacks depth and genuine „WOW” factor of earlier mentioned production.

Blackthorne screenshot

I went through Blackthorne like a hawk goes through freshly caught rabbit – with blood on my claws and madness in my eyes. I didn’t follow the back story much though but I had fun regardless, which would not be possible in Flashback that was heavily story driven. Anyway, a character that player controls has a wide palette of on-screen actions with which he has to go through each level killing good and bad alike. He can run, roll, jump whilst standing or running, shoot in various directions, throw grenades, use objects or hide in the comforting darkness of shadows. When hidden he cannot be targeted or seen, so it’s a good idea to use this to your advantage.

Blackthorne screenshot

The game’s filled with little puzzles but they are really nothing that would either catch your attention or cause you to stop to think things through. They’re more like common sense – you have to remember not to use all the grenades at once because three or four screens from where you are there may be a door that needs removing with carefully placed explosives and such. Simple stuff! That’s good though cause Blackthorne does not claim to be a thinking man’s game – it’s a simple arcade/action platformer with loads of shooting and on-screen blood. Really, what’s best in video games!

Blackthorne screenshot

The game looks slightly different on each of the platforms it was released on due to specific limitations & capabilities of those gaming architectures. Gameboy Advance being the most stripped down and Sega 32X the most feature rich versions. Fortunately they all play exactly the same. And that’s good because there’s not many things that say “Relaxing Sunday Afternoon” like putting a bullet through a head of an unknown defenseless guy chained to the wall… Or so I heard.

Blackthorne screenshot

All in all, Blackthorne is not a game you’ll remember for being the most innovative or having immerse story behind it. No, it won’t happen! You will remember it as a game that provided you with tons of fun and mindless slaughter in the name of whatever… Cause it’s not the reason that counts here, it’s the act of doing it… And body count. ^__^

Blackthorne screenshot

…and one last thing to remember: in the beautifully red color stained World of Blackthorne we NEVER give up!

Redman and Method Man at E3 2010

Redman and Method Man at E3 2010

For those that don’t know E3 is broken up into two halls and they are pretty far apart. We started in the west hall which had booths from Capcom, Sony Online Entertainment and Nintendo. When we got to the south hall the first thing we ran into was the Biowear booth showing off The Old Republic MMO. Then we heard music coming from behind them and went to investigate.

Right next to the Konami section was a large stage showing off Def Jam’s Rap Stars that allows you to rap along with a ton of songs from the Def Jam library. It looked pretty cool; they had two people on stage testing out how it works. You can rap solo or with a friend and not only do you get the music, but also the video from the song. We’ll bring you a full review later, but not only did we get to see the game but also the rap mogul himself Russell Simmons made an appearance and had some employees rap to the song, Push It by Salt and Pepper.

Redman and Method Man at E3 2010

Obviously that was cool to see him, but then we heard Redman and Method Man would be doing a mini concert and we had to get in on that. Unfortunately, between lots of pushing and shoving, a shaky camera, two microphones going bad and a super loud speaker next to my camera the audio and video isn’t the greatest.

Even with that the concert itself was cool. Red and Meth definitely looked like they were enjoying themselves even taunting the L.A. fans by saying Rasheed Wallace was in the building. In fact it was clear that both wanted the concert to last longer, but I guess time was limited. They did go through a number of their songs from both their single albums and the Blackout series.

Redman and Method Man at E3 2010

Another funny moment was when Redman wanted everyone to chant for a How High 2 movie and everyone agreed that would be awesome. Personally I think we need a double feature, How High 2 and Half Baked 2, now tell me that wouldn’t be a blockbuster.

The Def Jam booth was defiantly rocking and drew crowds that spilled out to other sections of E3. Even if you aren’t the biggest rap fan just being there and seeing and feeling the excitement of the crowd would get you into it.

Redman and Method Man at E3 2010

As I said the main problem with the video was I was far back and had to use zoom, coupled with people pushing and jumping and my shaky camera it’s not the best footage. The worst part is my microphone records mostly base so while I have pretty much the whole concert on film most of the time all you hear is bass. However, if you guys don’t care I will upload the rest of the concert to the Obsolete Gamer YouTube channel so you can check it out.

Def Jam Rap Star is set to be released on October 5th 2010. Blackout 3 is slated for a late 2010, early 2011 release.

Jean-Charles Gaudechon: EA Black Box

EA Black Box logo
EA Black Box logo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Name: Jean-Charles Gaudechon

Title: Producer

Company: EA Black Box

Favorite Classic Game: M.U.D’s, StarCraft, Need for Speed

Quote: Check out the audio profile below

PlayPlay

PlayPlay

Nintendo 3DS – First Look

Nintendo 3DS logo
Nintendo 3DS logo

Right away when walking into E3 we saw the line for the Nintendo booth stretching all the way to the door and though we knew there were a ton of games coming out most were interested in getting their hands on the 3DS. The 3DS will offer autostereoscopic viewing which means 3D without the need for glasses and a 3D camera so you can take your very own 3D pictures.

Now when we got our hands on it we were able to see how some of the games worked and most of them looked pretty good in 3D. There is a slider on the 3DS that allows you to adjust the level of 3D so when viewing it you get the best experience. There is also a switch to change between 2D and 3D.

E3 2010 Nintendo 3DS

However, one of the coolest things was the cameras. The 3DS offers one inner camera and two outer cameras with 640×480 (0.3 Mega) pixel resolution. The two cameras, which take binocular images, are important because that is what creates the 3D effect. For example if you take a picture of someone standing with their arm extended you would see the body of the person in the background and the arm and hand of the person in the foreground giving you the 3D effect, pretty cool.

Let’s get down to some stats. The 3DS is approximately 5.3 inches wide, 2.9 inches long, 0.8 inches tall and weighs 8 ounces. Its top screen is a 3.53-inch widescreen LCD display, enabling 3D view without the need for special glasses; with 800×240 pixel resolution (400 pixels are allocated for each eye to enable 3D viewing). The touch screen is a 3.02-inch LCD with 320×240 pixel resolution with a touch screen. The 3DS game card will be 2GB max at launch.

E3 2010 Nintendo 3DS

As for wireless communication the 3DS can communicate in the 2.4 GHz band. Multiple Nintendo 3DS systems can connect via a local wireless connection to let users communicate or enjoy competitive game play. Systems also can connect to LAN access points to access the Internet and allow people to enjoy games with others and will support IEEE 802.11 with enhanced security (WPA/WPA2). Nintendo 3DS hardware is designed so that even when not in use, it can automatically exchange data with other Nintendo 3DS systems or receive data via the Internet while in sleep mode.

For controls you have the Touch screen, embedded microphone, A/B/X/Y face buttons, + Control Pad, L/R buttons, Start and Select buttons, “Slide Pad” that allows 360-degree analog input, one inner camera, two outer cameras, motion sensor and a gyro sensor. You will receive stereo sound from speakers on the left and right of the top screen.

E3 2010 Nintendo 3DS

In addition you have the 3D Depth Slider to adjust level of 3D effect (can be scaled back or turned off completely depending on the preference of the user), Home button to call system function, Wireless switch to turn off wireless communications (even during game play), Power button. The telescoping stylus is approximately 4 inches when fully extended. As for input/output you have a port that accepts both Nintendo 3DS game cards and game cards for the Nintendo DS™ family of systems, an SD memory card slot, an AC adapter connector, a charging cradle terminal and a stereo headphone output jack.

All in all you have a system that will not only play the new 3DS titles but titles from other DS systems as well and add in the cool 3D camera and it looks as if Nintendo has yet another winner on its hands. Now let’s talk games. We were able to get a list of upcoming titles for the 3DS broken down by the publisher. Keep in mind this is not the final list and of course is subject to change.

Publisher Game
Activision Publishing, Inc. DJ Hero® 3D
AQ INTERACTIVE cubic ninja
ATLUS Etrian Odyssey
Shin Megami Tensei
Shin Megami Tensei: Persona
Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor
Capcom RESIDENT EVIL® REVELATIONS
SUPER STREET FIGHTER IV 3D Edition (name not final)
Electronic Arts FIFA Soccer
Madden NFL
The Sims™ 3
Gameloft Asphalt GT
Harmonix Music game
HUDSON SOFT Bomberman franchise
DECA SPORTS franchise
KORORINPA franchise
 

 

KONAMI

Baseball franchise
Contra franchise
Frogger franchise
HIDEO KOJIMA’S METAL GEAR SOLID SNAKE EATER 3D “The Naked Sample”
PRO EVOLUTION SOCCER franchise /WINNING ELEVEN franchise
LEVEL-5 Professor Layton and the Mask of Miracle (name not final)
Majesco Entertainment BloodRayne: The Shroud
A Boy and His Blob
Face Racers: Photo Finish
Lion’s Pride: Adventures on the Serengeti
Martha Stewart
WonderWorld Amusement Park
Marvelous Entertainment BOKUJYOUMONOGATARI 3D (name not final)
NAMCO BANDAI Games Dragon Ball® franchise (name not final)
Gundam® franchise (name not final)
PAC-MAN& GALAGA™ (name not final)
RIDGE RACER® (name not final)
Super Robot franchise (name not final)
Nintendo Animal Crossing™
Kid Icarus: Uprising
Mario Kart™
nintendogs+ cats
Paper Mario™
PilotWings Resort™
Star Fox 64™ 3D
Steel Diver™
ROCKET Crash-City GP
VS-robo
SEGA Sonic (name not final)
Super Monkey Ball (name not final)
 

 

SQUARE ENIX

 

 

CODENAME: Chocobo Racing® 3D

DRAGON QUEST® franchise
FINAL FANTASY® franchise
KINGDOM HEARTS franchise
Take-Two Interactive Carnival Games® franchise
TECMO KOEI GAMES DEAD OR ALIVE® 3D (name not final)
DYNASTY WARRIORS® (name not final)
NINJA GAIDEN® (name not final)
SAMURAI WARRIORS® 3D (name not final)
TOMY LOVELY LISA 3D
NARUTO SHIPPUDEN ACTION
THQ de Blob 2
Kung Fu Panda Kaboom of Doom
Marvel Super Hero Squad Infinity Gauntlet
The Penguins of Madagascar
Puss N Boots
Saints Row: Drive-By
Ubisoft Assassin’s CreedLost Legacy
Battle of Giants: Dinosaur Strike
Driver® Renegade
Hollywood 61 (name not final)
Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon™
Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell Chaos Theory™
Warner Bros Batman franchise
LEGO franchise

Got a question on the 3DS or any of the titles? Send us an e-mail from our contact us page and we’ll get you the answer. As more information becomes available we will bring it to you. For now check out this video from E3 with Shigeru Miyamoto and Eiji Aonuma.

Kevin Wasielewski: Origin PC

 

Kevin Wasielewski

Name: Kevin Wasielewski

Title: CEO

Company: Origin PC

Favorite Classic Game: Half-Life, Doom and Many more

Quote: We caught up with Kevin at E3 to talk to him about his love of Classic gaming. Check out the interview link below.

Assassin’s Creed Lineage

Assassin's Creed Lineage
Assassin’s Creed Lineage

Assassin’s Creed Lineage

Enjoy the 36 minute prequel to Assassin’s Creed 2, starring all the actors that got used as models for the game.

In this movie, your father, Giovanni Auditore is investigating the murder of the Duke of Milan and gets involved in trying to uncover a sinister conspiracy.

Watch the entire film here:

The Assassin’s Creed franchise is my favorite action assassination stealth kind of games with a historical feel to them. Great prequel to a game. Give the games a chance if you want to play something that makes you relive history.

Happy Birthday Sonic – Sonic Sale

Sonic the Hedgehog Cake
Sonic the Hedgehog Cake

Our little Hedgehog turns nineteen tomorrow and to celebrate Sega is slashing prices on all their downloadable Sonic titles. The sales will be spread out across different platforms meaning Xbox Live will have a sales period, Playstation Network and so on.

Here is a list of the sales for each group:

PlayStation Network: June 22-July 6
Sonic All-Stars Racing: Metal Sonic Death Egg $7.99 $5.49
Sonic All-Stars Racing: Ryo with Forklift Character $4.99 $3.49
Sonic Unleashed Apatos & Shamar Adventure Pack $2.99 $1.99
Sonic Unleashed Chun-nan Adventure Pack $2.99 $1.99
Sonic Unleashed Empire City & Adabat Adventure $2.99 $1.99
Sonic Unleashed Holoska Adventure Pack $2.99 $1.99
Sonic Unleashed Mazuri Adventure Pack $2.99 $1.99
Sonic Unleashed Spagonia Adventure Pack $2.99 $1.99
Sonic the Hedgehog 2006: Very Hard Missions $2.49 $1.49
Sonic Unleashed Add On Bundle $17.94 $8.99
Sonic Racing Add On Bundle $12.98 $6.49
Sonic Rivals 2 (PSP via PSN) $19.99 $13.99
Sonic Rivals (PSP) $15.99 $10.99
Sonic Rivals 1 & 2 Bundle (PSP) $35.98 $17.99

iTunes AppStore: Wed June 23rd to Wed June 30th
Super Monkey Ball $4.99 $2.99
Sonic the Hedgehog $5.99 $3.99
Super Monkey Ball 2 $5.99 $3.99
Sonic the Hedgehog 2 $5.99 $3.99
Streets of Rage $2.99 $0.99
Golden Axe $2.99 $0.99
Super Monkey Ball 2: Sakura Ed. $7.99 $4.99

Xbox LIVE Marketplace: June 24 (one day only)
Sonic the Hedgehog 2 $5.00 $3.00
Sonic the Hedgehog 3 $5.00 $3.00
Sonic the Hedgehog $5.00 $3.00
Sonic & Knuckles $5.00 $3.00

I Want This Motherf#$^in’ 3D Out of My Motherf%$@in’ Games!

3D Blood Gaming
3D Blood Gaming

I’m one of those guys that can look at a piece of technology and already label its longevity either positively or negatively. For example, I don’t see Tablet PCs going anywhere for real household use. It plays a useful role in business for IT professionals but I don’t see Little Annie and her brother Marcus finding any pivotal use in one three years from now. The practicality of tablets being used every day is nil, in my opinion. My disgust for tablets and their strong marketing push is dwarfed, however, by the tsunami of shit encompassing visual media in the form of 3D. Never have I seen such a strong push in new media as I have for 3D. As a matter of fact, I think aside from the use of motion sensor technology, E3’s main hailstorm of shit pellets came from the boisterous and unrelenting gimmick of 3D in games. I know a lot of people are now looking forward to wearing fake sunglasses indoors so they can feel like a member of the Cure while playing Gran Turismo in their sweaty Ed Hardy shirts. Good job! You’re still a douche.

When I saw Avatar was being marketed as a 3D movie I was fine with that because it said from the get-go that it was slating to be a 3D movie. It was specifically made to enhance this experience and there wasn’t enough 3D in movies around that time. Then this “Fern Gully” rip off got huge and popular and now every movie that was made for 2D is quickly adding a 3D experience. I admit though, I am a bit of a hypocrite and have seen plenty of movies in 3D since then. Alice in Wonderland had to have been the worst use of the technology thus far next to Toy Story 3 (was there even anything popping out in this movie?). I constantly vow to myself to never buy a 3D movie ticket, a 3D television, and now a 3D video game.

Do they really need to push 3D into household use? Isn’t it bad enough it already strains your eyes in the theater. If I wanted shit to come flying at me I’d go outside and have someone throw a rock at my face. There’s no need for the Blades of Athena to swirl and twirl by the nape of my nose while Kratos dismembers a God. A grenade shooting shrapnel near my eye in Call of Duty won’t enhance my experience. The last thing I want in a video game is to pause the game and drool at the beauty of the objects hovering around me (in certain viewing angles only please!). One cannot even begin to fathom the strain put onto a gamer’s eyes after a 4-5 hour Halo binge. 3D does not increase the experience of anything. It isn’t stimulating whatsoever and doesn’t need to be put into interactive media. It is a gimmick of smoke and mirrors. It’s like showing your friend what happens when you put a Mentos in Diet Coke. Sure it’s cool the first 4 bottles then you realize things get pricey and it isn’t as cool past the third bottle. I hope this addition to gaming ends as swiftly as the Virtual Game Boy.

Looking Glass Studios, The Series Finale

Looking Glass Studios logo
Looking Glass Studios logo

Looking Glass Studios, The Series Finale

5 part videos shot by Mike Chrzanowski showing the day that Looking Glass Studios closed down their doors.

My fondest memories of their games are System Shock 1 and 2 and Thief 1 and 2.

Looking Glass Studios existed from 1990 to 2000.

Here is a look at the day they shut down.

Part 1:

Part 2:

Part 3:

Part 4:

Part 5:

Thanks to Mike for sharing this experience with the gaming world and video game history.

A look at Tera Online

TERA Box Art
TERA Box Art

While at E3 2010 Obsolete Gamer was able to get a preview of the new En Masse MMO, Tera Online. Developed by Bluehole Studios, Tera Online brings the battle stylings and action of an RPG fighter on a console and mixes it in with the depth and emersion factor of an MMORPG. I was able to speak to Brain Knox a senior producer for Tera Online about the game and demo it as well.

What was stressed about Tera Online was that it was action oriented. Now this does not mean there isn’t a stunningly beautiful massive world and engaging storyline. The world of Tera was ravaged by the God’s and other dark forces and so the inhabitants of the planet decided to band together to reclaim their world from the God’s. This speaks to another main point of Tera Online and that is the lack of factions. With Tera Online the goal with the quests is to write your own story as you complete thousands of quests and fight even more monsters.

The key is in the fighting system which relies more on movement, teamwork and attack timing. What this means is where and how you hit your enemy matters and working as a team to coordinate your attacks is vital. No more point and click and no more staring at the UI, in Tera Online your attention is on the battle even if you are healing.

Here are some of the key features from the Tera Online Press Kit:

TERA E3 2010 screenshot
TERA E3 2010 screenshot
  • Explore and Engage: Experience an Action MMO beyond “point and click,” where position, timing, and aim determine success in combat, and player characters climb, jump, and swim over and through obstacles.
  • Monstrous Melee: Skillful attacks, not stats, determine the outcome of battles under TERA’s non-target based combat system, making fighting more intuitive, exciting, and intensely realistic than standard MMOs.
  • All Action, No Faction: Go beyond canned stories and factions to write the history of TERA in real time as players join together against dark powers including underworlders, marauding monsters, and evil gods.
  • Discover a Vast Fantasy World: Play six character races (Human, High Elf, Castanic, Aman, Popori, and Baraka) and eight classes (warrior, lancer, slayer, berserker, archer, sorcerer, priest, and mystic); battle hundreds of monsters throughout 80+ zones and thousands of quests in a game world filled with a huge array of weapons and items, and rich in history and lore.
  • Enjoy Stunning Graphics and Extraordinary Animation: Explore a world filled with breathtaking vistas and a wide range of environments, from verdant forests to snowy tundra to dark, terrifying dungeons.
  • Experience a Vibrant Community: In a faction-free world, all players can impact the community and social, political, and economic structures of TERA.
  • Choice of Control: Play with mouse and keyboard or your favorite PC-compatible console controller.
  • Play with Confidence: Keep your focus where it should be—in the game. TERA is fully designed, localized, and supported for North America and Europe.

Below is video from Tera Online including an intro from me, the official E3 trailer and Gameplay footage with my interview with Brian Knox.

Tera Online is set to be released sometime in 2011. We will be bringing you more information on Tera Online as it becomes available. You can check out more information on the Tera Online website.

Sean McNamara: Crave Entertainment

Crave Entertainment logo

Name: Sean McNamara

Title: Game Designer

Company: Crave Entertainment

Favorite Classic Game: TMNT: Turtles in Time

Quote: I’ve always loved the ninja turtles and with the time travel theme and tossing the bad guys at the screen effect was just too cool.


The Obsolete Gamer Show #1

J.A. Laraque from Obsoletegamer.com
J.A. Laraque from Obsoletegamer.com

After an exciting week at E3 Obsolete Gamer is back and we brought a podcast with us! It was a wild week in L.A. starting with a late arrival to E3, a Hummer rent-a-car, getting caught in the post Laker win riot and tons and tons of games. We learned a lot being our first time at E3 and yes, we made some mistakes too, but all in all it turned out great.

We’ve already posted a ton of pictures from E3 on our Facebook page and you can find a series of E3 related videos on our YouTube channel. Our first podcast brings you interviews recorded at E3 from various companies including; Alienware, EA,Square Enix, Origin, Bigfoot Networks, Indicade, En Masse Entertainment and a special one and one interview with Arthur Lewis, president of Alienware.

In the future we plan to bring you more podcasts with interviews, videos and more but for now have a listen and tell us what you think.

P.S. We have a bunch of swag to giveaway so stay turned to our Facebook and Twitter pages for information.

Brain Knox: En Masse Entertainment

En Masse Entertainment logo

Name: Brain Knox

Company: En Masse Entertainment

Profession: Senior Producer

Favorite Classic Game: The Legend of Zelda, A Link to the Past

Quote: It was the first game I ever stood in line for. It was a great game with an open colorful, vibrant world that really got you into it.


I Had 150 Pokemon But A Charmander Named Pidgey Ain’t One.

No Mew 4 U
No Mew 4 U

There are many dismal moments that people linger on. The kind of moments that felt like they cheated their ways into life. A positive note in one’s lifelong journey can easily shift tides and become a time remembered with great disdain. One such moment was when I was eleven years old and heavily addicted to Pokemon the Game Boy game.

My brother and I, in our adolescent youth, had caught all 150 Pokemon in our game by trading with each other and making one cartridge the master trainer. The adventure took a good month’s worth of dedication. Now, for an eleven and seven year old, catching all 150 Pokemon was a pretty big deal for us. A pretty big fucking deal. Never had we banded together for such a feat in our lives. To this day we still haven’t undertaken a joint project with one another of such magnitude since we became Pokemon masters.

It was a Thursday afternoon and we both attended a karate school with our younger sister. Since our age divisions were an hour apart, we decided to do the Mew trick and catch ourselves the final 151th Pokemon to officially become grand masters in our field of Pokemonology after we got home. I had brought my Gameboy to totally pwn all of the other ninja’s in training at my dojo while I waited for my class to start. Once it was time to physically abuse my sparring partners with my paddle-like feet (They are so flat it stings when I kick you. A just punishment for making me take off my shoes to rumble.), my sister approached me and asked if she could play my Pokemon game. I told her fine but to not save. She always knew not to and was pretty good about not doing so. Rushing off to class to become a demon of Kenpo, I felt like I had the strength of 150 Pokemon on my karate belt and soon I would add one more. Time flew by and class ended as swiftly as Mankey’s karate chop attack. My siblings and I raced home filled with excitement to finally bring our journey to a close.

For those wondering how to catch Mew in Pokemon Red and Blue:

Sitting side by side on the couch, both of us were on the brink of pissing ourselves from the electricity filling the air around us. That gloomy green and black screen which only a true gamer could find beauty in of our Gameboy illuminated our innocent faces. As we prepared ourselves to load the game, we noticed it said our Pokedex said 1 Pokemon caught. Thinking it was a glitch, we loaded the game anyway. Slowly, as our hearts sank, we realized it wasn’t a glitch. We were in Pallet Town with one Pokemon named Pidgey. The insult didn’t end there. No, no it did not. That Pidgey… was a fucking Charmander. She saved over our game and we were left with a Charmander named Pidgey.

Obviously, we flipped out. Of course we did. It was the only logical reaction at the time. My sister claimed she didn’t do it on purpose and looking at her little round face with missing teeth and helmet-like haircut filled me with mercy. She was too innocent at the time to truly embrace evil and wrong doings. My brother and I never again attempted to catch those 151 Pokemon ever. We were beaten and broken. Our heads were bloodied and bowed. Never again would this kind of madness happen again, we assured ourselves. We took the reins of monitoring saved games in the family from that point on.

It wasn’t until my college years that another apocalyptic event such as this would resurface. I was eighteen at the time that Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas came out and to say the least, it was the bomb-diggity. Every day after my classes I would come home and play GTA:SA for a good 2-3 hours before getting back to business and completing my homework/studying. On the weekends, however, I would play till the sun came up. I found all the little hidden packages in the entire city, found my amusement in kamikazing planes into buildings, had all the districts unlocked, and was nearly completed with the game. If I recall correctly, it said my file had 98% completion or something around this ratio. My playtime was probably 80+ hours by the time I reached this point in the game and I only had one mission left. Carl Johnson was about to reclaim the hood and own this city. Nothing would stop him now.

During my lunch break at school, I decided to go home instead for a little something to eat. My stepfather was playing GTA when I got there and I didn’t think anything of it. I let him play my save since I had all the weapons, hideouts, and the whole map unlocked. Normally, having this kind of freedom to roam around a sandbox game is what brings the most fun. Not having to work hard to unlock everything brings unlimited enjoyments since it allows one to render an unprecedented amount of widespread carnage. Returning to school, I thought nothing of him playing the game since it was part of the norm.

Finally returning to my abode after wanting to cut myself in business class, I was ready to kick some ass and finish GTA:SA. Now I refuse to insult your intelligence as you’ve probably caught on to what has happened I will simply jump ahead to my reaction. Realizing that I had 30 minutes of gameplay on my save and being in the first neighborhood I hulked out pretty bad. Looking back at it now, I shouldn’t have tossed and kicked the living shit out of my PS2 and then sold it to Gamestop along with all my PS2 games but I basically rage quit Playstation 2 after that. I couldn’t believe that the Heavens would look down on me and smite me a second time.

It is since that time I have not allowed anyone to even play the same game I am until I beat it or I make multiple saves on multiple hard drives on my PC in the event someone does something ridiculous again. I have learned my lesson, at least I hope I have. The last thing I need is for my hard drives to die simultaneously and/or someone decides to reformat everything. Safety first and don’t trust anyone with your games. Know what? That’s what I’m going to leave with you. Safety first and don’t trust a single person you love, worship, or admire with your fucking games. Just don’t do it, damn it. Yeah I like how that sounds.

If you’ve had any horrible experiences with game save or progression losses let us know the anguish and sinking feeling in your soul. Feel free to comment!

GOG sale: Complete Tex Murphy Collection

Tex Murphy: Mean Streets
Tex Murphy: Mean Streets

GOG sale: Complete Tex Murphy Collection

Are you a fan of detective science fiction adventure games? You’ll be happy to know that the Tex Murphy series of games are on sale 50% off this weekend from Good Old Games!

Get the collection here from our friends at Good Old Games.

The games feel a lot like Blade Runner.

The collection includes Mean Streets, Martians Memorandum, Under A Killing Moon, The Pandora Directive, and Tex Murphy: Overseer.

I played the living hell out of Mean Streets on c64…

The later games included a lot more video:

Check them out, fans of adventure and detective gaming!

Ode to the Evil Twin

In almost every hero’s journey they come to question their actions and the possible outcome of their quest had they taken a step to the left rather than to the right. Could the world have been saved in a different method? Could the fallen comrade have survived? Could all this mayhem have ended swiftly if they only took the opportunity to finish off the antagonist when the moment presented itself? The darkest parallel thought a hero could imagine is “What if I had fallen to darkness instead of striding upon the path of the righteous?” For some few unfortunate heroes, this “what if” can present itself in a physical manifestation and even become one of the biggest road blocks in their journey.

Kill yourself or die trying
Kill yourself or die trying

Today, we take a look into some of the most iconic evil counterparts in video game history, what they represented to the hero, and the epic battles that proved as pivotal moments in the game’s timeline.

**SPOILERS BY THE WAY**

Dark Samus (Metroid Prime):  Poison has always been a substance that plagued any living organism but it remained passive and indifferent. It was only used for killing in the hands of its user. In Metroid Prime, the poison Phazon is not only deadly but also sentient.  Responsible for the death of two planets, this entity looked to spread its plague further and melded the DNA of Samus Aran and her foe, Metroid Prime to create Dark Samus.  To see your greatest foes taking your form as their avatar would fill any hero with rage. Our heroine managed to disintegrate Dark Samus into particles in the Agon Wastes and then once again by breaching the monstrosity’s Phazon Shield with a charge beam. Though defeated, Dark Samus has the potential to return in the future through the game’s savior by a Mark of Corruption left upon her. Only time will tell if we will ever see this enemy rise again.

Wolf O’Donnell AKA Star Wolf (Star Fox 64): Rival companies are always taking blows at each other. Look at Microsoft VS Macintosh, IPhones VS Droid, PS3 VS Xbox 360 for examples. While they normally dish out retorts via commercials or improving their own technology to eclipse the other, mercenary groups don’t normally play the same game. Star Wolf is the rival mercenary group led by Wolf O’Donnell. Their number one priority is to become the top dog group in the Lylat System. The only foreseeable way to achieve this is simple; recruit old Star Fox members, work for your rival’s mark, and hunt them down till they are left in a smoldering wreckage. While Wolf has been unsuccessful in defeating Fox McCloud he still remains a huge pillar for the team to overcome in every instance he has led an assault. He will be most remembered for telling Star Fox  he can’t do that.

Omega Zero (Megaman Zero series): Zero has always been a hero who walked that fine line between right and wrong but can you blame him? He was Dr.Wily’s greatest creation, he is supposedly responsible for the death of the original Megaman, and is rumored to be the bringer of the end of days. Like a rebellious child, though, Zero forged his own path and strayed away from the road Dr.Wily left for him and became a hero. However, the idea of bringing about total chaos and destruction never left Zero’s mind and weighed heavily upon him. Luckily for him, he isn’t the real Zero but only a copy. What a weight off his shoulders! Turns out Omega Zero is the true body of Zero and guess what? He wants to tear his copy a new asshole and end life as we know it. Finally seeing that dark “What if” version of himself, our hero vowed never to travel down that path and defeated his original body dying along with it.

Dark Link (The Legend of Zelda): Link has defeated zombies, ghosts, witches, blobby things, grand sorcerers, and anything else you can think of in all his journeys. The one enemy though who manages to stop Link in his tracks is his own shadow. Normally appearing in a large desolate and eerie hallway, this abomination knows everything about Link. He even knows what you’re going to do before you do it. Going to spin that sword around? He’s going to evade. Going to charge up a heavy sword slash? He’s going to poke you in the face quickly. Thinking a bomb might work? He will just throw it back at you. The best way for Link to defeat himself is to flail erratically and hope something lands while slowly dwindling away his hit points. To this day, Dark Link remains an iconic foe to add to the Legend of Zelda’s rogue gallery.

Metal Sonic (Sonic the Hedgehog): Thought I’d put Shadow the Hedgehog down? Nope, I don’t consider characters introduced when a series goes to garbage as cannon. Besides, Shadow never fought Sonic like his roboticized counterpart did. He has been used in many iterations in the franchise and has taken many different forms. He is superior to Sonic in every way. His spikes are sharper, his plated skin is more durable, and he is even faster than the series’ hero. His first appearance was in Sonic the Hedgehog 2 where the two would clash in a small enclosed area. He mimicked everything the hero could do and could even shoot projectile spikes to harm the hedgehog. This battle’s level of greatness is paltry compared to his battle against Sonic in Sonic CD. In Stardust Speedway, the only thing keeping Sonic from saving Amy and defeating Eggman is to defeat Metal Sonic in a race. Not only is he faster than our hero, he can destroy obstacles and is invulnerable to damage. The only way to defeat him is to haul ass through loops and leap over spikes while he eats shit behind you. It is like a Tortoise and Hare battle except there isn’t a tortoise and there are two hares. The difference between the two is that the other hare has a jetpack and dies when it barrages itself into a wall. I hope to see Metal Sonic return in some more worthy Sonic adventures in the future and to bring the level of intensity he normally delivers to a new generation of gamers.

There are many more video games out there with evil counterparts but this was just to name a few that I can still remember to this day. Are there any other instances where the hero fought their doppelganger that you remember? Post a comment if you recall any!

Obscure Gamer – Anyone For Tennis?

Four player action from SNES classic Super Tennis

It’s that time of year again, when strawberries increase in price, barley water is consumed in vast quantities and yellow balls are bouncing on usually empty courts. It’s Wimbledon fortnight, and a nation’s thoughts turn to how soon the British hopefuls will lose. Of course, tennis in video game form has a long and impressive history.

Some of the earliest games and games machines were built around the ability to play a game based on tennis. Two bats (or racquets) knocked a square ball back and forth over the net trying to beat an opponent, whether human or sadistically controlled by the intelligent computer. Table tennis analogies soon gave way to tennis courts, either through an on-screen overlay (such as with the Philips Videopac) or the console itself (such as the bright orange Grandstand’s TV Games machine with six exciting variations on Pong).

When home computers and consoles came along, the background became green grass, the lines stayed white and the ball began to get rounder. One of the earliest successes in the field was Psion’s Match Point, popularising what would become the standard view for many tennis games. Viewed from the baseline behind one player and with the lines closing in via perspective, many players had trouble playing at the far end. Match Point tried to introduce forehand and backhand, but with only one button it was tricky to get good control. Accolade’s Serve & Volley had a unique “strobe-o-scope” view of a shot, requiring the player to press fire at the right moment to sweetly time a shot.

A surprise contender for most unusual tennis game came from Sensible Software, more famous for their shoot ‘em ups and football simulations. International 3D Tennis appeared through Palace Software, and included a brilliant rendition of the BBC’s tennis theme music created by the late, great musician Richard Joseph. Its most innovative idea was the polygonal players, drawn in wire-frame outlines on the C64 and semi-filled polygons on the Amiga. This also allowed more versatile camera angles, from a zoomed-out overhead shot presumably provided by a blimp to a side-on angle that favoured neither side. The players themselves had real character, from walking out to bobbing back and forth on the baseline waiting for a serve to the match-concluding handshake. With four difficulty levels and a world of tournaments to enter, there was an impressive level of depth there too.

Another step forward was Codemasters, licensing the dominant Pete Sampras for their Megadrive game. This came on a J-cart, adding two extra ports on the front and allowing a great game of doubles between four humans. Another Megadrive license was Davis Cup Tennis, most notable for allowing players to dispute calls and swear (in censored speech bubbles) at the umpire.

It was Sega who put the fun back into tennis, with the arcade and Dreamcast incarnations of Virtua Tennis. Graphical power gave great likenesses of leading professionals (despite the yawning chasms of their square-toothed mouths) and the control method was designed to make things easy and yet still be strategic. An inspired add-on for the Dreamcast conversion was the World Tour mode, where tennis-themed minigames help the player improve their stats. Although Sumo Digital tried hard with Sega All-Stars Tennis, the combination of Sega mascots and power-ups did not gel as well as the Nintendo 64’s excellent Mario Tennis game from a few years previously.

As the players become more lifelike and the graphics more detailed, it’s important not to lose sight of one thing – the playability. After all, it’s what got so many people into playing video games in the first place, hitting those pixels back and forth…

The Lion, The Witch, and The Mouth Breather

Angry Multiplayer

You are traversing with a small battalion of your closest friends through a seething cave leading toward the coiling serpent dragon which has daunted your whole lot for the past three weeks. This monster has left the nearby village smoldering, killed your king, left the country in shambles and you’ve gathered a force formidable enough to make this monstrosity’s blood fill the rivers from their draught. The time has come. It is asleep. The archers ready their bow; your knights raise their shields defensively; the finger tips of your mages are encompassed by the hostile arcane. You are ready. Your blade cuts through the air like a guillotine towards the nape of the behemoth’s neck. You are suddenly countered by a shrieking voice which drops your whole party to their knees. “MOM! Give me thirty more minutes! I’m raiding with my friends! No!!! I won’t get off! I hate you!”

The Lion The Witch And The Mouth Breather
The Lion The Witch And The Mouth Breather

For those who game online, you know exactly what I’m talking about. It is the whining little kid in your party who is constantly on open mic, screaming at his mother about how unfairly they treat him. The ranting doesn’t end. Oh no, far from it. It continues for hours unless someone takes the initiative to kick this mouth breather out of your Vent channel. If there’s one thing that can ruin online gaming it’s the damn, disrespectful gamers who do not use Push-To-Talk when you’re playing. Oh, and before I continue, I’m not hating on little kids who are filled with angst because I hate almost all people who don’t know how to cover their microphones. I’m going to go ahead and divide these various personas up and give you a diagnosis of why they are a bane to internet multiplayer.

· Pizza Eating Joe – Joe is or wishes he was a frat boy. He thinks he’s cool online by exposing his wit in the midst of quoting movies, cackling at every joke and getting involved in every conversation. While these characteristics are enough to want to hurt Joe, he does something that crosses the line of internet ethics (yes, the internet has ethics). Joe likes to chew pizza with an open mic and lets everyone hear it. The most direct method to ending this gushing ambiance is to tell Joe to push the microphone away while he purees his food down his gullet. He illogically retorts with reassurance that the pizza is very delicious. No one cares, Joe. We don’t want to think about that greasy pizza touching your microphone increasing the chances of it rubbing against your acne ridden face. His intentions are simple. He’s cool and he’s eating pizza. He wants you to experience how awesome he is when he eats pizza.

· Mouth Breathing Mendoza – Mendoza has one issue or another which causes him to have a problem breathing. Be it a stuffy nose, obesity, respiratory issues, or he just breathes like an ogre, Mendoza feels the need to place his mic either on the rimming of his booger-encrusted nose or gently caressing his upper lip area. He knows Push-To-Talk is there but he feels it is a priority that you hear what he has to say amidst all of his wheezing. All you will hear is his deep, pedophiliac breathing on your ear for moments at a time until he finally says something that is blatantly obvious to all parties involved in the situation. It isn’t even enough that he quietly lingers just to blurt these sudden non-issue comments but his voice output exceeds any safety regulation the Lord has put forth for your ears to survive and endure. One night with Mouth Breathing Mendoza and you leave feeling violated with a stream of blood dripping from your damaged ear drums.

· Rage Induced Ralph – When something goes wrong, Rage Induced Ralph answers his calling. Did you accidentally aggro a room? Did your friendly fire affect him? Was his kill stolen by you? Have no fear, because this internet tough guy is there to talk you down and constantly rant. His breathing is heavy because his adrenaline is pumping. His TV or Speaker volume is maxed out so you can hear that double echoing feedback from when he finally gets revenge on you for what you did. God forbid Ralph has a significant other because chances are that your grief onto him is going to make him flip out on this innocent bystander. Ralph will not stop trashing talking you and taunting you until your match is over. The reason Ralph is like this is simple. He’s either living in or from New Jersey, his skin is carrot colored, and he has a ridiculous blow out. Harming this man’s ego is like murdering his infant child. Be careful og this predator because he never forgives and he never forgets.

· Static Bomb Baxter– You’ve known him online for quite some time. He’s not a bad guy but he isn’t quite one of “the guys” yet until he gets a mic to talk to the crew. Constantly being asked to get a microphone, Baxter finally types into your guild’s chat and says “I have an old one I could use. I don’t know if it works though.” It is at this point some people rejoice that Baxter can join into the conversation but you know better than that. Those dreaded final texted words will be the end of you all. Baxter returns with his microphone, installs the software needed to join your channel and that normally welcoming chime rings in the channel when he finally joins. He doesn’t know about Push-To-Talk so he has to be guided through it. Regrettably, his sound is so loud on his headphones it carries over through the microphone. It creates a loop of feedback that takes some time for all parties to recover from. When the mist has cleared, Baxter finally mutters a word into the mic. A static blast of malfunctioning hardware spits into your membrane, causing disorientation, double vision, internal bleeding, and for some reason or another, you produced a kidney stone. You beg Baxter to stop talking but he doesn’t listen because he can’t hear you on his headset! He continues with this barrage until you all submit to the pain. Baxter disappears after this embarrassment and is never seen in-game again.

· Cry Baby Christopher – As stated in the introduction to this little rant, Christopher is a teenager who is still finding his place in this world. Unfortunately, the unforgiving world of the internet does not want him until he finds that place. The problem with Christopher is that he is young and doesn’t know what Push-To-Talk is and even when he does figure it out, his finger is always jammed firmly against that key so you hear him all the time. He’s fine when he doesn’t talk. As a matter of fact, he’s probably better at the game than you are. The downside to Christopher is that he isn’t a mute. He likes to brag about all the ladies in his school who want him and how badass he is when he plays pranks on his unfortunate teacher. Regardless of how desperately he seeks approval from his peers, Christopher always finds a way to lose that respect. That loss usually occurs at bed time when his parents demand he goes to bed and that his addiction to the internet is too great. He combines all the aspects of every persona described. He is angry, he is probably eating, he’s now wheezing, and his microphone is receiving a lot of static from his high pitched shrieks. Normally after such outbursts, Christopher is exiled from the internet.

Clearly, I pointed out the personas commonly encountered and while I can’t suggest a remedy that will destroy these individuals before they are garnered a chance to speak, I can recommend some very basic tips for those who feel fall into any of these categories.

  1. Turn off your microphone.
  2. Move the microphone away from your face when you aren’t speaking.
  3. Learn Push-To-Talk.
  4. Don’t speak ever.
  5. Destroy your modem or Wi-Fi receiver.

I certainly hope these reasonable tips will help these individuals progress in their careers as internet users. If not, in the foreseeable and very near future more people will be plagued with these Horsemen of the Internet Apocalypse. In any case, I’m off and back into the fray to play Modern Warfare 2 with my friend Baxter.

Free Game – Hydorah

Free Game – Hydorah

In the spirit of 8 and 16 bit side scrolling shooters comes Hydorah, a free game from Locomalito.

Hydorah
Hydorah

The game is a lot of fun and plays a lot like NES/c64/Amiga games of this style like Gradius, Life Force, Disposable Hero, and Project X.

Upgrades, bosses, the usual!

You can download the full game here.

Just download the ISO and mount the game with your favorite virtual image program such as DaemonTools, Alcohol 110%, or PowerISO.

Thanks goes out to Joern Ashes for the recommendation!

Sebastian Strzalkowski: Sony Online Entertainment

SOE logo

Name: Sebastian Strzalkowski

Company: Sony Online Entertainment

Profession: Art Directory on Clone war adventures

Favorite game: Day of the Tentacle & Monkey Island

Quote: The artwork, production value and the humor of the games were excellent.



E3 2010 – Day One

E3 2010
E3 2010

First I have to apologize because the plan was to be there in time for all the announcements and that just did not happen. However, we were able to get some pictures and some footage for the hour we had, but we promise tomorrow will be a full day and bring you everything we can from E3.

Now let’s talk about what we do have. I was able to check out some display cases holding the new Nintendo DS. Unfortunately, we did not get a spec or game list, but that will be forthcoming. For now check out all the colors.

E3 2010 Nintendo DS
E3 2010 Nintendo DS
E3 2010 Nintendo DS
E3 2010 Nintendo DS
E3 2010 Nintendo DS
E3 2010 Nintendo DS
E3 2010 Nintendo DS
E3 2010 Nintendo DS

Next up was something cool. As you know Marvel versus Capcom 3 is being released soon and we were able to test it out and it was pretty awesome. After playing we realized we needed to get some footage so here is some game-play footage from MvC3.

After this we made our way over to the south building just in time to see a trailer for the new Star Wars MMO, The Old Republic. Now please excuse the shaky camera, we are poor here at Obsolete Gamer.

Okay, so we admit we get a D- minus for day one coverage, but we will be back tomorrow for day two to make up for it so stay tuned to our Facebook and Twitter page for updates. Now where did I put that alarm clock?

The Interview – Vadim Asadov – iZ3D

iz3d logo
iz3d logo

iZ3D

3D gaming is here, you have already seen the impact 3D has had on movies and television and now 3D gaming will add a new dynamic with Steroscopic 3D. If you want to be on the forefront of 3D gaming you will need the right tools including a PC that can handle 3D gaming, a good 3D monitor and 3D glasses.

Now there are going to be tons of people looking to cash in on 3D gaming, but its best to do your research before you lay down the cash needed to get in the game. Selecting the right parts can not only save you money but insure you get the best 3D gaming experience out there.

iZ3D offers a 22 inch monitor and stylish 3D glasses that are sure to impress. Obsolete Gamer was able to talk to Vadim Asadov, Vice President of Business Development at iZ3D and you can check out his gaming profile as well.

Tell us a little about iZ3D?

iZ3D Inc is a company started as 3D display project in 1999. Our original name was Neurok Optics LLC and then we create joint venture with Chi Mei Optoelectronic from Taiwan – world 3rd biggest display manufacturer. We also created 3d driver to run our display as well as another 3d devices.

What effect will 3D gaming have on PC gaming in general?

It makes it more natural, more immerse, more attractive – and of course will require more GPU power. But it is really hard to return back to flat word after 3D 🙂 I think more and more people will accept 3d soon.

Some people feel it’s still a little early for 3D gaming due to cost of setup what are your thoughts?

I don’t think cost is an issue – check new GPU price – it is high. And modern 3d monitors are not so expensive, may be 20-25% more than common.

Why is it important to select the right monitor, simply put, why purchase the iZ3D 22in monitor?

There are a lot of factor you need to keep in mind for 3D: quality, brightness, resolution, glasses (all 3d monitors use either active or passive glasses). I think 22″ iZ3D is the best combination of all factors important for 3d

You also have a number of 3D glasses, tell us about them?

Glasses are the same technologically – they all are polarization based (same as sport sun glasses). But we have choice for different styles and color – we think it is important for gamers as well.

What games have you played in 3D and which is your favorite?

I’d be happy to play more, but … I like to play WoW from time to time for 3d only – some places there are just amazing!

There are a ton of games out there that are already taking advantage of 3D technology with many more on the horizon. For most it will come down to a matter of budget before they pull the trigger and go 3D, but if you think 3D gaming is just a fad, well they said the same about HD.

Texas Instruments Bill Cosby

[youtube id=”5Y9AaIZOfIw” width=”633″ height=”356″]

Texas Instruments Bill Cosby

What could be better than Dr. Bill Cosby talking about Texas Instruments computers? I remember my own TI-99 that was given to me by my uncle. Most of the cartridges were educational including one that yelled “YOUR TURN” after it presented the problem to you.

TI-99 computer

The TI-99 was released in June of 1981 it cost around five hundred bucks and that was without a monitor. The CPU was the TI TMS9900, 3MHz. The display was a Video via an RF modulator 32 characters by 24 lines text and 192 X 256, 16 color graphics. The ROM cartridge was located on the front it and had Audio/Video ports and a joystick input (we used the Atari joystick). The OS was ROM Basic.

[youtube id=”VOEhGhWWPIY” width=”633″ height=”356″]

My favorite game had to be Munchman which was a Pac-Man like game that we fun to play and had some cool sound effects especially when you eat the bad guys.

SteelSeries – Pro Gaming Laser Mouse & Pad

SteelSeries logo
SteelSeries logo

I’m going to change things up a bit. Everyone has a way of doing a review or talking about something they used or liked and though there is a formula for doing so I say the heck with that. I will just tell you what I got, how I used it and what I think, simple enough?

I got my hand on the Steelseries XAI laser mouse and the 9HD mouse pad or gaming surface. Now right off the bat I realized I liked the thin flat mouse pads better because I don’t feel as if my hand and wrist are any higher off the desk than it should be. Also for curved desks it can prevent you from being pinched by the mouse pad which for some reason has happened to me a bunch of times.

SteelSeries 9HD mousepad
SteelSeries 9HD mousepad

Even though the pad is very thin it is well constructed the hard plastic is smooth on the top and has great grip on the bottom. Now the 9HD has thousands of light reflecting points and what this does is insure that if you flail your mouse around like a child thrown into the pool for the first time you don’t lose your tracking on screen. Ever see some World of Warcraft plays spaz out while PVP’ing, this is why having that and a wide surface is important.

Now let’s talk about the mouse. First off like the mouse pad the XAI is constructed very well. The mouse has a good size and weight and feels like it can take a pounding. It has seven programmable buttons for you MMO and RTS gamers and you can even download profiles used by pro gamers so you can use their setup. The size is just about perfect so if you have large hands or small ones you can still use this mouse without issue and with its slip resistant covering you won’t have your mouse flying out of your hand in the middle of a battle.

Left or right handed it doesn’t matter thanks to the ambidextrous shape. It feels comfortable on the hand which is important for long gaming sessions. One of the really cool things is the LCD menu system on the bottom of the mouse. You can configure your XAI for aim, report rate, speed and even hardware acceleration. Right above the scroll wheel you can toggle between two customizable CPI settings for adjustments on the fly. Even the mouse cord is braded so it does not tangle and it’s long enough for those keeping their desktop under their desk.

Steelseries XAI laser mouse
Steelseries XAI laser mouse

In the real world, or at least in mine I found the XAI to work well be it surfing, FPS, RTS or MMO’s. I think the key is it functions well out of the box even if you don’t do any custom setting, but if you want to get specific it has the means to do so that makes it good for gamers of all sorts. I personally needed a mouse that moved fast and glided well across the pad and the XAI combined with the 9HD does just that. From twitch moves in first person shooters to click fests in W.O.W the combo worked well for me.

You can check out more on the XAI gaming mouse and 9HD mouse pad on the Steelseries website.

Here are the specs:

Specifications for SteelSeries Xai Laser:

– Frames per second: 12.000

– Inches per second: 150+

– Megapixels per second: 10.8

– Counts per inch: 100 – 5.001 (one CPI Steps)

– Max. Acceleration: 30 G

– Sensor data path: True 16 bit

– Lift distance: ~1mm (auto-adjusting)

– Buttons: 8

Steelseries XAI laser mouse
Steelseries XAI laser mouse

– Cord: 2 m / 6,5 ft (braided to improve durability)

– Polling: 125 – 1000 Hz (1Hz increments)

– Gold-plated USB connector

– Measurements: 125,5 x 68,3 x 38,7 mm / 4,94 x 2,69 x 1,52 in

– CPI high/low indicator

– SteelSeries FreeMove Technology

– SteelSeries ExactSens Technology

– SteelSeries ExactRate Technology

– SteelSeries ExactAim Technology

– On mouse acceleration Technology

– On mouse LCD display for tweaking above technologies thru menu system

– Large pressure points that reduce friction for optimized glide

– Driverless, plug-and-play feature for LAN gamers

– Built-in memory for 5 profiles

– Operating systems: Win 2000/XP/Vista/7 / Mac OSX

*Configuration software only available for Windows operating systems

Steelseries XAI laser mouse
Steelseries XAI laser mouse

– Material: Hard plastic

– Surface treatment: Heat

– Dimensions: 270 x 320 x 2 mm / 10,7 x 12,7 x 0,08 in

– Size: Medium

– Glide: Rough

– Compatibility: Optical, laser, ball

NBA Showdown

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NBA Showdown

The playoffs are in full swing, but the next showdown is already upon us. With EA renaming its basketball franchise to NBA Elite and 2K getting Michael Jordan as a playable character in their game, the question is, which one will you be playing?

NBA 2K 2011

Now EA is coming out with some interesting changes to their game including their “total control” feature where you control the legs of your player with one analog stick and the hands with the other, add to that their “always on” physics and it looks as if they might have a pretty awesome game on their hands.


2K will also be improving on their game with updated graphics, controls, presentation and music, but that’s not what most people are talking about.


It’s all about number 23. We haven’t seen MJ in a NBA game in forever and now he will be in 2K11, will that be the difference maker or will the revamp of EA’s franchise win gamers over?

Today in video game history – June 11th

Pryzm box
Pryzm box

PRYZM Chapter One: The Dark Unicorn was released for the PS2.

Game Info

Publisher: TDK Mediactive

Developer: Sandbox Studios

Genre(s): Action

Players: 1

ESRB Rating: T (Teen)

Release Date: June 11, 2002

Summary

A corrupting plague of dark magic grips the world… once lush lands have turned barren, and the inhabitants have become hostile mutant creatures. Now, join the quest of a unique young unicorn and a tenacious old troll in a desperate bid to find and destroy the source of the curse. Journey through four vast and eerie lands – each with four levels to explore. Cast eight powerful spells against 24 bizarre mutant enemies. Battle five gargantuan bosses and sub-bosses. Restore lands and inhabitants to health and witness their amazing transformation.

My video game Christmas Story

Adult gamers Wii
Adult gamers Wii

You never do it all on your own, this is true in life and true in gaming. Something or more likely someone is there at some point giving you a helping hand. For most of us our life of gaming began during childhood and when we found our love of gaming we dragged our parent’s right in with us. This series will talk about Gamer Parents and their effects on us and the industry.

I have a number of stories of interactions between my mother and I regarding gaming but one sticks out in my mind. It was about a week before Christmas and the Nintendo Entertainment System was on every kid’s wish list. I had made bargains and promises and finally my mother agreed to get it for me. She was old school in that she did not keep up on anything technical and didn’t really even know where to go get it, so I was tasked to find out where to get it and she would go and pay for it.

city at night
city at night

It was Friday night and I was at home searching the phone book to call stores asking if they had the NES. Many of the stores were sold out and the smile on my face that I had when I started had quickly faded. Then I got a stoke of good luck. A Toys-R-Us had one, but the store was thirty miles away. To me that was nothing and when my mother walked in the door I had the address and directions to the store ready to go. I was bouncing around with all the energy of child not taking notice of my mom’s condition. I doubt I even gave her a moment to rest before I was dragging her back out to the car.

Now I grew up in Chicago, so in December it was bitter cold and snowing. There was ice on the ground and tons of people going home from work, out for the night or shopping as we were. The traffic was horrible, but all I could think about was my new NES and how I’d soon be playing Mario Bros.

We get to Toys-R-Us and I fly inside not waiting for my mother. In seconds I was at the electronic section. By the time my mother got there I was almost in tears. They had sold the last one just ten minutes ago. I had no back-up plan, no other store directions or addresses. I just wanted to die. My mom suggested we try a few stores on the way home which temporality uplifted my spirits.

Seven stores later with no NES in sight I just wanted to go home and quit. I felt Christmas was ruined and didn’t even want to celebrate it anymore. Nothing my mom said or did make me feel any better. I had laid down in the backseat of the car when it came to a stop. I knew we couldn’t have arrived home yet.

I looked out the window to see another store. Now for the life of me I can’t remember the store name, but what I can tell you was it was not known for any toys or electronics for the matter. It was what I would call an “old ladies” store. My mom had dragged me there many times for clothes or home appliances and stuff.

Nintendo NES box
Nintendo NES box

I was actually upset that my mom had brought me to a store like this that had no chance to have my NES. However, I was pretty well behaved thanks to my mom’s firm hand so I did not put up a fuss. We entered the store and my mom headed for the electronic section. Then I caught a glimpse of it. My eyes widened, my heart began to race. It was a display of Nintendo’s behind a glass counter. There were at least ten of them. I couldn’t believe it and I guess that was the point. The store normally would not have carried NES’s, but since it was such a hot item and it was the holidays they did. I guess kids and parents alike did not think to go there to look for a NES so they had them in stock.

I was in heaven until my mom pulled out her checkbook. The lady behind the counter said they no longer accepted checks, only cash or charge. As I said my mom was old school and did not have a credit card and surely did not have the cash on her. I was ready to die again until the lady looked at my mother’s check number.

Now some of you might not know this but the number to the right of the check not only tells you how many checks you wrote but, at least back then, was an indicator of your credit status. Think of it like a credit score, the more checks you wrote the better your credit was. My mother had written over eight thousand checks which showed she could be trusted. The sales lady spoke to the manager and he agreed to sell my mom the NES. It truly felt like Christmas morning. I had my NES and all was right in the world. I was energized all the way home dying to play it.

Even though I was really excited I did take a moment to thank my mom and that is when I saw it. See was tired, like the tired you would have after working ungodly hours as a nurse. My mother was an LPN (licensed practice nurse) and she worked 12 to 16 hours shifts all the time. In fact many times she would work back to back and even overnights. As a kid with no responsibility I did not fully understand the strength it took to come home after working that hard and having to drive me all over town for some game.

She could have ended our trek after the first store or told me to wait until the next day to go. I understood a bit more that day what it took to raise me and my sister as a single parent, but it took years for me to fully understand her sacrifices. I made sure to think of that night whenever I got mad over something stupid. Sometimes I forgot and acted like she had never done anything for me, but then I quickly remembered that night and many other things she did for me.

That was not the first or last time that my mother and I went off on an adventure for something gaming related. Perhaps one day I will tell you about our hunt for Texas Instruments software. In the coming weeks I will talk more about gamer parents and what they meant to us and the industry. For now, think about your own parents and what they did for you and if you can, tell them thanks.

Michael Pole: Trilogy Studios

Trilogy Studios logo

Name: Michael Pole

Profession: Co-Founder and CEO

Company: Trilogy Studios

Favorite Game: World Series Baseball – Sega Saturn

Quote: It was the best baseball game of its time. While the graphics and features in today’s game have advanced tremendously, I still believe (and play every so often) that the Sega Saturn version of World Series had the best feel of any baseball game ever developed.

Fuck Yea Friday

Fuck Yea, it’s Friday.

See there rest of the series here.

Exact Amount of Money Fuck Yea

No Thanks Bitches Fuck Yea

Sex As Payment Fuck Yea

I can't waste my time tutoring you Fuck Yea

Fuck Yea Why Not

Would You Like Fries With That Fuck Yea

Hitler Fuck Yea

Two Cans Come Out Fuck Yea

Porn Leads to Fucking Fuck Yea

Instant Blowjob Fuck Yea

Miscarriage Fuck Yea

The McRib Is Back Fuck Yea

Perfect Cookies Fuck Yea

Valentine's Cock Block Fuck Yea

Super Mario Bros Fuck Yea

One Last Cigarette Fuck Yea

No Shit Came Out When I Farted Fuck Yea

recursive GIF reddit Fuck Yea

Rich Woman Likes Me Fuck Yea

Like Stealing Candy From A Baby Fuck Yea

Today in Video Game History – June 10th

SNES Street Fighter 2 box
SNES Street Fighter 2 box

One of the most famous fighting games in history was released to homes in Japan. On June 10th 1992 Street Fighter II – The World Warrior was released for the Super Nintendo entertainment system. The game looked and played very well on the SNES and offered the ability for players to adjust the handicap setting.  SF2 did not make it to U.S. consoles until July and once it did my summer was ruined.

The Interview – Justin Melendez – LanSlide PC

LanSlide Gaming PCs logo
LanSlide Gaming PCs logo

LanSlide PC

Some people may ask why is there still a need for LAN parties with console domination, MMO’s and high-speed internet, but if you are asking those questions then you don’t get the point. A LAN party is just as much about social interaction as it is about gaming. I personally met the majority of my Miami friends after joining a LAN party and it was the best experience I’ve had regarding gaming.

Earthquake entry level power
Earthquake entry level power

LanSlide PCs is a company that peeked my interest because not only do they build high-end gaming systems, but they focus on the LAN party aspect of PC gaming. Originally people would bring whateversystem they had to a LAN party and often the custom or self-build systems were extremely large and heavy. However, as time went on more and more people built smaller systems so they could specially take them to LAN parties. The company Shuttle was a godsend to LAN party goers because of its small form factor. Having a place to turn to in order to have custom gaming systems build for LAN parties just seemed like a good idea.

Now while LanSlide does specialize in custom build LAN ready systems that doesn’t mean they aren’t meant for everyday and even extreme gaming. Another good thing is that their wide array of options allows you to select a system that fits your needs from components to price. You can select your processor choice and build from there with various case sizes and pricing from around $800 for the entry level system all the way up to $4800 for the extreme gaming rigs.

LanSlide PCs PC Pack
LanSlide PCs PC Pack

Now their PC-Pack is defiantly a LAN go’ers dream, it is a large backpack designed to hold almost everything you would need to take to a LAN party. I was able to get my hand on one and I was impressed by its sizes, design and craftsmanship. The pack can hold a 22 inch flat panel monitor, gaming keyboard, headphones, your mouse and a ton of other accessories you would need for on the go gaming. What’s cool is the pack splits when opened so you can fit all your items in separate compartments where they remain protected and won’t bounce around. My only complaint was on the website under “What doesn’t fit” it lists Florida.

You’ve seen Justin’s gamer profile, but we wanted to get a little more information on him and LanSlide PC.

What is the vision, the overall goal of LanSlide?

LanSlide was founded by a group of gamers sick of dragging their oversized desktops around. We’re dedicated to bringing powerful but portable desktop computers to the gaming community because we find being together, in the same room, gives a level of interaction and shared experience that can’t be matched over a computer connection. So I guess you could say our vision is to make it easier for gamers to get together and play games. At the same time, our goal as a company is to create affordable gaming machines that are well-suited to the needs of our gamers. Too many companies have forgotten that last bit, which is a big part of why we felt we needed to create LanSlide.

With high-speed internet and consoles, do you believe LAN parties are still popular?

All you have to do is look at conventions like PAX and Digital Overload, where tons of gamers show up with their gaming rigs, to see that LAN gaming is alive and well. A close friend of mine has two of the major consoles, yet I can’t remember the last time we played a game on them; I’m over there several times a week with my PC, however. The multiplayer games are just more interesting on PCs. Try playing an RTS, MMO, or FPS on the console; it’s just not as good for that kind of game play. I think consoles have PCs beat in the single player genre (although they don’t have to, hint hint, cough cough game producers), but when it comes to multiplayer, PCs are where all the interesting stuff is happening. High speed internet and the move towards centralized servers only make it easier for people who are not in the area to log in and join up. People have always liked to get together in person, no matter what their interests, and what better thing for gamers to get together over than video games.

What makes LanSlide stand out from other manufacturers?

When we took a look at the industry, we found that a lot of computers were oversized and overpriced. So when we founded LanSlide, we set out to change that. All of our computers are portable and we make a point not to overcharge for high-end machines. We also take the time with our customers to make sure they’re getting the best machines to suit their needs. We’ll often e-mail back and forth several times with a prospective customer to help them build a computer. In addition, we take our feedback very seriously, and when someone has a good idea, we try to implement it as quickly as possible.

How would you help a gamer choose one of your systems?

It really depends on what kind of games they play. There’s a wide range of PC gamers, from the hardcore to the super-casual. For most people, who only need one video card, we recommend any of our small form factor systems. For people who are really hardcore and want insane rigs that are going to blow everyone else out of the water, we have a mid-tower that’ll take 2-3 video cards. If you want to do all of that AND do it in 3D, go for one of our 3D systems, which set you up with everything you need to game in 3D. Our biggest piece of advice, though, is to make sure you get a rig that’s going to solve the in-game problems you’re having and improve your gaming experience. We also recommend you buy a system that leaves you some room to grow as a gamer.

Tell us about the concept behind the PC Pack?

You go through the trouble and expense of buying all this awesome gaming gear, so shouldn’t you have something to protect it? That’s the idea behind the PC Pack (http://www.lanslidepcs.com/productdetails.asp?pid=40). It’s basically a backpack designed to hold and protect up to a 22″ widescreen monitor, extra-long gaming keyboard, mouse, headphones, and all the other things you need to run your desktop. It makes it easy to transport your computer in one trip, since our cases are all easy to carry, and everything else goes in the PC Pack and can be put on your back. Imagine the difference when walking into a big LAN party on the third floor of a conference center, where you only have to make the trip once, half the weight is on your back instead of in your arms, and you have a free hand to open the door. There’s just no comparison to moving your computer without it, plus it saves you the heartbreak of losing your brand new monitor to a flight of stairs.

How do you think 3D gaming will change the face of PC gaming?

3D gaming makes for a more immersive experience, and that has a huge impact on the player, making it possible to get much more involved in the game. There’s nothing like the feeling of being the main character in your favorite FPS, ducking to take cover behind objects while you work your way through the enemy camp. Furthermore, we believe that, as 3D gaming becomes more prevalent, game developers will start designing specifically for 3D, and that may create a whole new class of games that play in new and amazing ways.

If you haven’t experienced a true LAN party you should and if you need a system to take then LanSlide might be right up your alley. In the end you can’t replace the interaction you get face to face and in person so anyone who is fighting to keep LAN parties going is awesome in my book. I personally loved to go to LAN parties then load up an Atari emulator sometimes just to piss people off, good times.