Games Coming Out December 2010 For PC

TRON hot girl
TRON hot girl

Games Coming Out December 2010 For PC by Honorabili

I can’t believe December is such a weak month this year but then again not that many studios are going to be suicidal enough to go up against a WoW expansion…Read More

Games to Buy: Dec 7th 2010

game store
game store

So you survived Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday and somehow you still have a few bucks in your wallet, well good thing this week there are only about three games that make our worthy buy list.

First a little change in the Games to buy format. We will now intertwine both PC and Console games into one which means that when we have a week that has a ton of games for both it will be a harsher cut for the ones we think are worth buying. Remember this is an opinion piece and for the most part we leave sports games out of it because we know you sports fans are going to pick up the latest edition.

World of Warcraft: Cataclysm

There is tons of information on this game and honestly if you are a World of Warcraft player you are getting this game case closed. The overall story is an ancient evil dragon called Deathwing laid a path of destruction that reshaped the world. What this means for gamers is the old world has changes so the land that you leveled up playing has changed forever. There are a ton of changes to how the character classes work, two new playable races and a ton of new dungeons and loot. Blizzard also have made changes to make gameplay quicker for those of us with little time.

Buy Worthiness: $$$$$

Tron: Evolution

Disney has pulled out all the stops in the sequel to the cult classic Tron and the same has been done with the game. Although some critics have given it a less than likeable score the game does look well put together. You have a mix of the classic Tron including the light cycle races and the action adventure levels where you chase down viruses in the virtual world running and jumping through the visually stunning city. There is also a multiplayer aspect that allows you to compete against up to ten other players. You can play Tron Evolution online or offline.

Buy Worthiness: $$$

Bejeweled 3

Perhaps there isn’t much one can say about a new puzzle game, but the fact is Popcap had and still has a winner with this game. Bejeweled can be found on pretty much anything from the PC to your phone and everywhere in-between. Now you have a brand new game that keeps to the classic gameplay but added cool additions including a 40 mission quest mode that has 11 mini games. There have also been updates to the four game modes found in Bejeweled 2. Finally you get new backgrounds a tweak in the music department an even clearer visuals. All in all if you love puzzle games this is worth a buy at only $20.

Buy Worthiness: $$$

NewU Fitness First Mind Body

So you stumbled upon a Karma Sutra book and convinced your girlfriend to give some of the new positions a try. Unfortunately, both you and she are out of shape and could not even do the beginner positions. I guess it’s back to missionary for you, well maybe not.

Thanks to the Wii, brining you wastes of time since 2006, you can now Yoga your way to the backwards sun pretzel position in just a few short weeks. This hot new program will teach you how to get your mind and body in sync preparing you for long nights of passion. Keggle’s add-on pack not included.

Buy Worthiness:  X

Ben Bradley: Ben Bradley

Ben Bradley logo
Ben Bradley logo

Name: Ben Bradley

Company: Ben Bradley

Profession: Indie Game Developer

Favorite Classic Game: Battlezone

Quote: There have been several games called Battlezone released at different times so I’d better be clear that my favorite classic game is Activision’s 1998 “Battlezone” game for the PC. This was a blend of real time strategy and first person shooters – it took the two most popular genres on the PC at the time and combined them in their entirety. Add to that an amazing outdoor graphics engine and a story which was so clever I almost believed in it myself. After being gripped by the game I got into designing levels for it in my evenings after school. Eventually I made a full mission pack with new weapons and units. That was the point where I realised I wanted to be a professional game developer, so I owe a lot to this game!


Bio: I’ve been working as a game programmer for four years, but in 2010 I made the jump to living off my savings and developing my own indie game. This has certainly been an adventure and I’m really enjoying working on Substream and I’m looking forward to getting it out there.

Substream logo
Substream logo

Project: Substream

Project Info: My current project is a 3D flying shmup which is currently being developed for PC, with other systems to follow. What sets it apart is an ambitious approach to music synchronization – the game has a fully dynamic environment which constantly morphs and reform to fit the mood and themes of the music; and enemies act upon the melodies. All this animation is designed by hand, so the game is like playing through a carefully crafted interactive music video. Substream also features a spatial distortion where the universe repeats like a hall of mirrors. This means enemies appear in multiple positions simultaneously and can attack or be attacked from multiple angles, which gives an interesting twist to the gameplay.

Motivational Monday: Sex Scenes

video game sex scenes demotivational poster
video game sex scenes demotivational poster

Motivational Monday: Sex Scenes

Ah, what is the old joke about video gamers and lack of sex? Perhaps this is why many of the women in video games are created in a manner that is FAPP worthy. When video games changed from just a single screen to multiple storylines with music and a movie-like quality it was the perfect opportunity to add sex to the mix.

In the past one would have to buy a specific adult game for the PC and the very few console systems that offered them. There was also innuendo in many games and the quick flash of sexiness here or there. In the classic Leisure Suit Larry sexy was used as a pun and though the game did have sex scenes it was kept mostly out of view.

Today with CGI and video game budgets that rival big budget movies the sex scene has just about reached the peak of where it can go without requiring an X rating. For the most part sex in games are used to create intimacy between characters, but sometimes it becomes a major selling point or point of debate for critics. Let’s take a look at various sex scenes from video games and you decide if it added to the game in the positive or the negative.

Content Warning: Some of the scenes may not be appropriate for children!

Leisure Suit Larry 3

You have to start with the king. Larry brought sex and innuendo to PC gamers everywhere and the best thing is the game was fun to play. Poor Larry always ended up in some humiliating and sometimes deadly situations, but he also scored from time to time along the way. Of course the sex scenes were hidden in some way, but it was pretty clear what was going on.

Indigo Prophecy

If the world is going to come to an end the thing you have to do is have sex. Honestly, it does not matter if you are on a freezing train or the guy might be a zombie you need to get your freak on. This scene took it up a notch with the boob shot and the distance butt shot giving you the skinamax experience.

Custer’s Last Stand

I really don’t know what to say about this game. Your job is to get to the Native American girl by avoiding arrows and then you are to have sex with her and you control the sex with the Atari joystick which is just a whole other issue altogether. The problem with this game and there are many is that you have to consider that if they are trying to stop you then you should not be having sex with this girl. Then again she is naked and standing there waiting for you. You have to check out the commentary on this video as well it is awesome.

God of War III

[youtube id=”p8Nq_0Cj6gc” width=”633″ height=”356″]

Kratos is truly a pimp. When you are battling the God’s and duck into a room full of half-naked women the thing to do is take a break and work out some stress. This is the male ego at its finest as we get a shot of two other half-naked women talking about how good Kratos is at laying the pipe. Perhaps I should say laying the sword as it sounds as if he is hacking her to death with a blade.

Mass Effect 2

Everyone talked so much about having sex with the blue alien you know they have to double their efforts for part two. Here we get two difference scenes and to their credit you do have to work to get them to sleep with you. In ME2 you get your choice or blue or white it’s the UN of sex out there in space.

Heavy Rain

The ultimate in interactive sex scenes, ok, it’s not the ultimate, but considering it is not an adult game where the only goal is to have sex it is interesting that you have to make the moves yourself. I don’t know what happens if you screw up like if you snap her bra or something. I really think they should add that. If you mess up she gets mad and wants to leave and you have to convince her to stay and start all over. If you screw up to many times she leaves and that’s it, or you get a crying while masturbating in the shower mini-game. Hey this can help the socially awkward.

Cold Shower Time

There are a few more sex scenes out there but there is only so much one should visually consume in one day. Also, I know a bunch of you are reading this from work and IT is already onto you and I don’t want to be blamed for your termination. See ya next week!

Mark Sheeky: Cornutopia

Cornutopia logo
Cornutopia logo

Name: Mark Sheeky

Company: Cornutopia

Profession: Artist and Game Developer

Favorite Classic Game: X-COM UFO: Enemy Unknown

Quote: There are so many choices for a classic game. The best games combine action and strategy and my other favorites Airborne Ranger of Project Stealth Fighter on the C64 did that brilliantly, as well as Frontier Elite 2 on the Amiga. Oh and I can’t help but mention the brilliant Nethack on PC too!

 

In my games I aim to be original and fun. I programmed games for over 20 years, and in the time produced 50 titles, mostly shareware, from small fun action games to larger more in depth titles like Taskforce and the Flatspace series. Game development is difficult and very few people manage to do the programming, art and audio. Gradually I discovered that I liked the creative aspect best, and in 2008 stopped game development to concentrate on art and game audio for my website indiesfx.


Bio: Cornutopia is a one man development team consisting of Mark Sheeky, with help from Andrew Williams for play testing and ideas.

Flatspace II DVD Cover
Flatspace II DVD Cover

Project: Flatspace II v1.05

Project Info: This is the latest update to my most successful game, Flatspace II, a game that tried to cross a dungeon crawling game like Nethack, with a space trading game like Elite. Its random elements and intelligent autonomous universe are its key features. The game is available for Windows on Impulse for $24.95. Visit Flatspace for details.

Commercial Wars: Best use of Mario Bros – Japanese edition

super mario bros mushroom girls cosplay
super mario bros mushroom girls cosplay

If you don’t know who the Mario Bros are stop reading right now. The fact is like Pac-Man Mario is a video game icon and with over 25 years of Mario Bros featuring many classic unforgettable hits it is no wonder the plumbers are still going strong today. Even when Mario is not fighting against Bowser or trying to rescue the princess many of his games have been entertaining from Tennis to Go-Kart racing. Obviously he has been in a ton of commercials and this week we look at the ones who used him best.

As you know the Nintendo Entertainment System originated in Japan and anyone who has watched any extended amount of Japanese commercials knows they can go from funny to crazy to downright disturbing. Let’s take a look at some of these commercials and vote on who gets the top spot.

Super Mario Bros 2 USA

If you thought Birdo was weird before this commercial from Japan will not make things better. Honestly, they makes things worse. Funny thing is there is an ongoing debate as to whether Birdo is a guy who dresses like a girl or a girl. My question is do you really want to know the answer. Unfortunately, I don’t have the translation for what Birdo said, but man watching him, her, it push that egg out of its snout was just disturbing.

Super Mario Bros: DS

So I won’t lie I just put this commercial here because the Japanese lady is cute and what she says and her facial expression are pretty cool. This was part of a series of Japanese commercials that showcased people acting naturally while playing the game instead of acting out a script. I think it was a winner.

Super Mario World: Super Famicom

I really think Mario could win America Idol I mean just look at his moves and singing style. Do you really need to know what he is saying? I have to say I like the presentation with the animated Mario and particularly the animated Bowser at the end. You have to give it to the Japanese; they know how to roll out a product.

Paper Mario

I swear this commercial makes Mario look like a mix between Barbie and Batman. Mario is just chillin on his own private beach, golfing, playing tennis and then boom, he has to go be all bad ass. Mario was smart and made sure to get all the royalties and now he is the Bruce Wayne of Japan.

Mario Kart: DS

It’s Mario Kart United Nations style. I love how the Japanese portray the American version, lol. I can’t blame them we do it to them.  I wonder why they are called the Hot Mario Bros, sounds like a porno.

 

Karoliina Korppoo: Colossal Order

Colossal_Order logo

Name: Karoliina Korppoo

Company: Colossal Order

Profession: Game designer

Favorite classic game: Planescape: Torment

Quote: The unique world and thrilling story just draws you in and you’ll never forget the characters you adventure with.

Current event: I’m working on my first PC title Cities in Motion!

GOG: Age of Wonders Half Off

gog good old games logo
gog good old games logo

If you are a fan of the Age of Wonders series you can now pick up three different games for half off. Starting at $2.99 to $4.999 you can own the original Age of Wonders, Age of Wonders 2: The wizard’s thrown and Age of wonders: shadow magic.

Age of Wonders 2 box
Age of Wonders 2 box

Head on over to Good Old Games for more information and tell em Obsolete Gamer sent ya.

Alan Wild: Focus Multimedia Limited

Focus Multimedia logo
Focus Multimedia logo

Name: Alan Wild

Company: Focus Multimedia Limited

Profession: PR, Marketing & Licensing Manager

Favorite Classic Game: Ultima Underworld

Quote: If I had to pick a favorite I would have to choose Ultima Underworld, mainly for the incredible, rewarding experience and the awesome development values for the time. However, I feel wrong choosing an absolute favorite classic game, as it’s really an impossible choice. There are so many defining games in gaming history.

I really need to pick a few games from some of the older hardware systems I’ve owned… Elite on the BBC Micro Computer was an absolutely stunning game. A true work of genius. Sure, replaying it now doesn’t do the game justice. In those days we only needed some polygons onscreen to play with and our minds would add the imagination, creativity and colour.

Ring of Darkness on the Dragon was my first RPG video game experience and it literally devoured months of my time. So simple in concept, yet so addictive in nature. The sequel, Return of the Ring, sadly didn’t deliver the same promise. The Bard’s Tale on the Amiga was fantastic, and sat alongside Anco’s greats of Kick Off 2 and Player Manager as my three most-played games of that era. Then came the PC.

My first PC was a custom gaming rig (386sx33 with maths coprocessor!) and I bought it for one reason: Ultima Underworld. What. A. Game. An RPG and a work of art that was way ahead of its time in terms of graphics, engine, combat and character interaction. I installed the crazy number of floppy disks it arrived on, one after the other, and three days later I remember the intense satisfaction as I finished the final quest and completed the game. Coupled with other incredible PC releases, such as Wolfenstein, Wing Commander, Privateer, DOOM and, of course, Ultima Underworld II, these were wondrous, fondly remembered years.

Cosplay: Xtreme Beach Volleyball

 

Dear Warner:

The times we worked together on the night shift were quite fun at first. You are a very funny guy and the various websites you showed me made the long nights of chatting with mostly spammers manageable. Honestly I looked forward to you being on the night shift with me that was until you started playing that awful song.

It started innocent enough. “Hey, mind if I play some tunes?” You asked. I said sure, why not. After all everything else you had done up to then was cool. As I sat back and relaxed expecting to hear some rock or techno my ears heard the most peculiar sound. I asked; “What is that, turn it up.” That was a big mistake.

The beat was simple and the lyrics mind melting. Only a few moments went by and I knew the sound would haunt me forever. “What the hell kind of song is this, Warner!” I screamed. “Dude!” He responded. “What, you never heard Banana phone before?” Clearly I hadn’t because if I had I would have already gone insane. He just kept playing it over and over and as much as I didn’t wanna hear it I couldn’t get myself up to turn it off.

“I can’t get it out of my brain!” I cried.

“That’s Banana phone” He replied with an evil grin.

The song still rings in my head today. Warner cursed me with that damn song destroying the peaceful calm of the chat support night shift.

I hate you Warner!

Via Cosplay!

 

Aileen Bautista: Dinoroar Interactive

Dinoroar Interactive logo
Dinoroar Interactive logo

Name: Aileen Bautista

Company: Dinoroar Interactive

Profession: Founder and CEO

Favorite Classic Game: Where in the world is Carmen Sandiego?

Quote: For a 1991 MS-DOS game, this was my absolutely favourite PC game when I was growing up.  I remember playing this game with the likes of “Gods”, “California Games”, and “Doom”.

My fondest memory was catching Carmen Sandiego, feeling all awesome that I caught the bad guy.  For an educational game at that time, it definitely didn’t seem like it.  I was having too much fun trying to capture suspects and travelling around the world.  I also enjoyed getting my missions and playing “detective”.

This was definitely one of those games that made you want to play it continuously until you caught Carmen Sandiego.

Bio: I’m the founder and CEO of Dinoroar Interactive. (www.dinoroar.com)  You don’t see a lot of girl gamers who take action and start their own games company these days.  I guess thats why I started one.  I wanted to produce games that I like to play, things that are fun and that challenge me- but also taking into consideration smart and quirky gaming situations that people want to be in.

The team at Dinoroar are pretty mad and consists of a vast array of super nerdy talented people that are committed to creating excellent and exciting games and products for all our loyal gaming followers.

Our focus is basic interaction- which means that the team provides smart, quirky and entertaining situations for you to be in.

 

Dinoroars’ innovative and interactive products and games gives anyone (of any age) an excuse to enjoy themselves for that brief moment in time.

Dinoroar memory loss
Dinoroar memory loss

Project: Memory Loss Games App. just recently released in the Apple App Store (for iPhone/ iPad/ iPod Touch at its introductory price of $3.99USD) and will also be available on Android and Symbian Market (release dates of Nov-Dec 2010)

Project Info: I wanted a game that was simple yet challenging and with this brief came up with our games app- Memory Loss.  It’s a skillful game that will get you HOOKED on its game play. Trust me this game ain’t for the light hearted.

 

It has 10 smartly created scenarios and the player will have a certain amount of items (and time) for to memorize the scene- then, it flips over to the actual game, where you have 60 seconds of play time to try and find all the items you saw previously.

Only ultra-super-duper tech head nerds will fight to the death to finish this game. (Like the Dinoroar team)  Will you be up for the challenge?

Memory Loss Games App. just recently released in the Apple App Store (for iPhone/ iPad/ iPod Touch at its introductory price of $3.99USD) and will also be available on Android and Symbian Market (release dates of Nov-Dec 2010)

 

 

 

 

Be Thankful, Gamer

Be Thankful, Gamer

I know. The title blew your mind. Umar Khan is writing about something he is thankful for rather than venting an apocalyptic hate filled rant? This is impossible, you may think to yourself. But it’s true. While my editorials are usually about me demeaning a genre or writing farewell letters, I am thankful for many things. And while I am in great appreciation for the greater things in life outside of gaming like friends and family and just the general ability to live, I am still thankful for the lesser things in life found in games.

happy-thanksgiving

I am thankful for games that give me a limited aerial arsenal and decide its time for an aerial fight. “Wait, what did he say?!” Calm down, reader! Give me a chance to explain myself. In games that focus too much on ground combat, I find it refreshing to be put into an aerial battle where my arsenal is limited to a single slashing attack. While these fights are repetitious in nature they also make every hit you land as important as the first swing. A force of timing and precision infuse you where the rest of the game left you with the mindless monotony of button mashing. One cannot deny the sheer satisfaction they feel when that overgrown robotic fly careens into the ground, left in a smoldering heap. Was it obnoxious? It sure was but you know when you have that get together with friends and talk about the game you’re all going to say, “Wasn’t the air battle a pain in the ass?” You’ll forge friends in common camaraderie and that is something you should be thankful for.

I am thankful for underwater levels because nothing gets my heart pumping more in a game than knowing there is the potential to suffocate or that hair rising terror that there could be a giant squid monster lurking in the murky depths. The sensation of dread that creeps upon me knowing that there is something dwelling around me in the darkness and one of my few hopes of survival around the crushing pressures of the blue abyss is my limited air supply is invigorating. I feel an unrelenting wave of anxiety as I progress through a game and I begin to notice the foreshadowing scenery getting a bit more coastal because I know, at some point, I will be submerged and I will end up crying myself to sleep like a little bitch that night.

I am thankful for villains who aren’t pure evil but just have differing views that they believe are correct and bode no true ill intent. In some sense you could find yourself relating to their predicament. If I learned one thing from Loghain in Dragon Age it’s that sometimes you have to be a D-bag to get through the day. Sure, the responsibility and knowledge of what you did will weigh heavily upon your shoulders but in order to be a titan sometimes you have to bear the curse of Atlas first. And while I found myself at odds with Loghain, had the tables been turned, had I witnessed the world from his perspective, it wouldn’t come as a surprise to find myself being loyal to this patriot.

I am thankful for in-game prostitutes. They are a great way to gauge your true moral values in life. As a teenager playing Grand Theft Auto, sleeping with a prostitute and immediately killing her for a refund was economical and humorous all at once. As I grew older and prostitutes found themselves leaking into other games, (haha, I said “leaking”) I began to take a more virtuous approach towards these emotionally distraught individuals. Should they keep to themselves as my hero rolled on by, I could see the pity in their eyes, the defeat drawn upon their faces as they simply tried to survive with the education they managed to soak in during their times in high school and the deprivation of their living situation, be it an addiction to drugs or a baby at home they wish to save from this lifestyle. However, should she open her disease-ridden, puss marked mouth and say “Hey, daddy? Want some tenda luvin care?” I kick into crusader mode and begin to purge the barrio from these swindling sluts! Some may say, what a hypocrite! I say, “Fuck you!”

I am thankful for player collision and the ability to grab your partner. Nothing increases the enjoyment of a game like having a cohort. And nothing increases that bliss like being able to nab your partner and toss them into a canyon between platforms. I remember spending more time fighting with my brother in the New Super Mario Brothers Wii than actually trying to complete the level. Constantly jumping in different directions to slam into each other and fall to our deaths, tossing one another into bob-ombs, and bubbling up to lose the level are some of the most amusing cooperative game play elements I have ever encountered. Let us not forget of the grand self-sabotage in the coop mode of Little Big Planet. If you remember, you could grab your partner’s arm and drag them. Nothing in comparison could be funnier than watching a friend run to gain force for a jump and chasing after them. Right before they took their leap of faith, I would nab their arm quickly and tug in the opposite direction, At this point all I had to do was let go, depleting their momentum but leaving them cascading in the air and falling short of the platform. I am so thankful for the ability to interact with your partner in a game. So very thankful for all the laughs and tears shed while with playing with friends.

So, dear reader, there are things out there to be thankful for in games, if you really think about it. They bring memorable times with friends, an opportunity to share a story with your brothers in arms, and a chance to display your true character traits. Right now, some of you are probably in your room, isolated from your family because you have relatives coming over for Thanksgiving and wish to not be bothered. You want to hold your Xbox close to you and whisper sweet nothings into its air vents but remember, keeping your gaming experience to yourself is lonely. Stories are best shared than kept in your head. Get out there, make some friends, drink with your family, have a good time because life is meaningless without people you care about, even if you feel they don’t care about you. It’s only one day any way. Enjoy it. Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.

Alterac Valley Noobs

World of Warcraft nub
World of Warcraft nub

Alterac Valley Noobs

I know what you are thinking, didn’t he write about being AFK in AV? Yes, this is true, but that was during my leveling stage. What I am talking about is AV at level 80. Did you hear, AV at 80 is its own bracket now? I can understand being under geared or even new to AV altogether, but this has gotten ridiculous.

I knew I was on the failboat when

When you load up into AV at 80 and there is about 10 seconds left before the game starts and you have no buffs, you know you are going to fail. I can only speak for alliance here, but since I am alliance and since we are all 12 can you please push the shiny button with Fortitude or Kings and for the love of God stop hitting the freaking Path of Frost button!

Here is a pro-tip noobs! Buffing in a BG before it starts uses no mana! Why do I see six mages and no mage table? Maybe you think giving biscuits to all for free is socialism. Maybe you think I should have my own food. Well you’re wrong noob! I have food, but its stat food and I need normal government cheese food! Hand it over you keyboard drooling loser muffin!

Warlocks, I know you only like hitting your three fear buttons over and over, but for the love of the Anti-Christ please make a soul well. I mean those soul stones come in handy when the real pros of AV are rushing to cap relief hut.

Is this thing on?

I know there are a lot of poop sock, hot pocket eating, super min/max playing ass hats out there and most of them are spamming some strat they read on the message board claiming it as their own, however, when we are trying to make a plan of attack at least turn back to the screen for a moment. That 48 year old you watch undressing from your bedroom window will be back again. Now is the time for gaming. Put down the lotion and watch the screen there might be useful information there.

There is nothing wrong with going for The Alterac Blitz, I know some of you think achievements suck, but maybe, just maybe you can try it you know, for this thing we humans like to call fun. How is it that so many people ignore BG chat? Do you just run around like Helen Keller with a potato sack over her head down to Galv every game? Maybe you are a BOT or more likely a dumbass. Do us a favor, stay AFK with the other 50% of the raid.

Like the girl you were stalking told you, don’t touch

You cheesy fingered, sunlight depraved, perma-virgins, how many times do we have to tell you not to cap Iceblood graveyard? Let me put it in terms you might understand. Remember when you wanted to masturbate real bad and family kept coming over the house? See if you went out to meet them they would leave you alone, but like the tool you are you stayed in your room being a social misfit, so, they kept coming to your door bothering you keeping you from getting off. This is called a turtle because it talks a long freaking time to get to the payoff! This is what you do if you cap IB, you make horde respawn farther back which slows down our advance which keeps us from reaching our goal quickly.

I need to take a breather

I have more to say, but to prevent TLDD I will break this up into another part. In the meantime, wash those crusty socks and dump out the pee jar. I’ll be back shortly to continue your schooling.

Brooks Piggott: Barcode Games

Carcode Games logo
Carcode Games logo

Name: Brooks Piggott

Company: Barcode Games

Profession: Owner / Developer

Favorite Classic Game: Galaga

Quote:

Bio: BarcodeGames is run by 2 developers from Austin, Texas. The company focuses on PC applications, web applications, and various mobile apps. The primary product of the company is Professional Football Simulator.

Professional Football Simulator
Professional Football Simulator

Project: Professional Football Simulator

Project Info: Professional Football Simulator is a text-based simulation game for the PC from Barcode Games. PFS allows players to own, operate, and coach a football team by simulating a single season or dozens of seasons. Players are in complete control of many team functions, including player drafting, free agency, roster moves, lineup setting, and play calling. The game allows significant customization of leagues including choosing from many popular league formats, financial models, and both modern and historical teams and players.

 

 

 

 

 

Facebook Gaming vs Real Games aka anything else

Facebook Gaming vs Real Games

As an experiment of sorts I installed a bunch of Facebook games to my profile to see why people play those games. I quickly saw that these games are merely made so that you can waste your time faster at a dead-end job (maybe a real job) rather than at the usual braindead rate.

Life is strife. Life is challenge. Most of the FB games I found (like 99% of them) don’t have any death penalty. What’s the point of doing anything if you’re immortal? Like seriously, even Tic Tac Toe is more hardcore. Even Pong is insanely more punishing than the typical FB game.

Tic Tac Toe
Yeah, even this little girl is more hardcore than Farmville!

I found a pattern with most of these games. The typical game will let you do a certain amount of actions or so per hour or per day, regenerating your ability to do more if you wait or if you pay real life money or facebook money. I guess this appeals to people who always thought video games were retarded but now they’re addicted to the most base form of “video games”.

FB games are basically blatant ripoffs on concepts taken from old school BBS door games. There’s a ton that involve having land, building an army, and attacking other players for resources. Of course, all these games now involve “leveling up” which sometimes doesn’t even give you anything but just goes to show how much of a loser you are for playing the game for longer than 2 minutes.

I actually found one FB game which does have death and losing but pretty much nobody plays it. The game is called Verdonia and it plays a lot like an MMO version of Defender of the Crown. The game consists of building up your country and conquering land from NPC and other player nations. Most other games are about trains or zombies or farms or dumb shit. It’s just a bunch of pointless fucking grinding that makes even the worst play-for-free MMO look like a work of art.

I guess these games appeal to the basic gaming addict that just want their level to go up with no point or skill needed. Here, just click on this button a bunch of times and level up your farm/zombie herd/etc.

I played these games for a bunch of days and then I fired up even some games that I had been sick of playing and here is what happened. OMFG, is this what fun feels like? Like, I’m sick of playing certain games that I play all the time with my friends like Dawn of War 1 and 2, Battleforge, GRID, etc but Jesus H Christ, even grinding these games that don’t even give me any gratification anymore is much more entertaining than even the best FB game. I found that my skill in playing games that require practice degraded a lot and I had to repractice to get my skills up to par.

Let’s talk about specific games:

Lucky Train: Build trains, board them, click to send them, repeat over and over and over and over and over (kill yourself)
Office & Co: Simulates pointless office jobs, the best part of the game being when you fight your boss and you play rock, paper, scissors with the chance of losing, only to repeat it again. You can’t get fired unlike in real life, for playing this game at work and getting caught.
BRAAAINS: Cute graphics but that doesn’t make up for a game where you can’t die. Build up a zombie army and keep doing it over and over as you fight random strangers in an uncontrolled pvp animated match.
Mobsters 2: Vendetta: Kind of neat to see the different missions that you can do but essentially, you read it once and who cares after you click on the mission again for the 40th time.
Castle Age: “rpg” fantasy game where you do quests that are just you clicking the quest button over and over and then you fight bosses and pvp other players, with no real death penalty. Pointless.
OfficeWorld: Tired of your pointless job in real life? Go be an asshole in a virtual office in this game. Click on people and deal with office drama, again without being able to get fired.
TrainStation: Similar to LuckyTrain, except not as cute.
CarTown: Game for people who wish they were 6 years old again and could play Micro Machines.
NightClub City: One of the neater games, again you can’t lose. Cool thing about it is that it plays samples from real musicians which I guess it’s a way for you to buy their singles online.
RomanTaxi: You run a taxi service in Ancient Rome… Yeah…
Mercenaries of War: Create a band of warriors and fight NPCs and other players, and even though they just shot you with assault rifles, you can never lose to the point of having to make a new character. What fucking bullshit is that?
BrainBuddies: Harder than the other games I just mentioned. You get to do little brain teasers to see how clever you are, or just how many times you did these quizzes and memorized what you had to do.
City of Wonder: Civilization rip off in which you attack random people and build up your city with again little consequence of chance of dying.
Tetris Friends: At least this is modeled after a real game. How can you fuck up Tetris?

Okay, I’m going to go punch a wall and play some hangman on paper with some elementary school kids because at least I can die in that game. Makes me want to fire up some Hello Kitty Online for Slaneesh’s sake!

Slaneesh demotivational poster
Slaneesh, worship him/her or Chaos will RAPE you

Andreas Persson: ApGames

ApGames logo
ApGames logo

Name: Andreas Persson

 

Company: ApGames

Profession: Programmer

 

Favorite Classic Game: DoDonpachi

Quote: DoDonpachi was one of the first “bullet hell” shooters and in my opinion still number one. A game that when you play it for high score never gets old. DoDonpachi is all about the gameplay and that perfect round. It also have beautiful pixel art and now also available on the iPhone with suprisingly good controls so new players can try it aswell.


Bio: ApGames is a Swedish developer consisting of just two people: a programmer and an artist. ApGames just released Caelum a casual pachinko game and now working on our second project.

Caelum by ApGames
Caelum by ApGames

Project: Caelum

Project Info: Caelum is a game in the same style as Peggle but not as hectic. Our aim was to create a relaxing game for everyone to enjoy.


GAMES TO BUY: CONSOLE EDITION: NOV 30 2010

video Game Store Japan
video Game Store Japan

My theory as to the reason for the lack of good games for the week after Thanksgiving is that companies feel people will be tired of buying after Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Seriously not to dump on anyone’s game but this week the pickings are a slim as leftovers at my house. Anyway I will try my best to bring you something but don’t expect any high scores or anything.

Golden Sun: Dark Dawn

It’s been a long time for fans of the Golden Sun series but finally the follow up is here and Camelot has delivered a good RPG game for your Nintendo DS. Dark Dawn is thirty years into the future and deals with the effects from releasing the golden sun onto the world. You play as the son of the hero from the previous game against a new villain Blados.

The good thing about Dark Dawn is they kept the gameplay of the first and just updated the look to work with the additional features of the DS. You still have the turn based random combat encounters and you can still interact with the environment. There are tons of magic spells to use and over 70 Djinn which are magical creatures based on the four elements that are spread across the world. When you find these Djinn you can add them to any of your characters to add or increase their magic ability.

For those of you that haven’t played Golden Sun or don’t remember the story well there are hyperlinks within the game that reference you to the in-game encyclopedia which will give you information on the backstory. In addition there are hints and hidden messages scrolled on the walls throughout the world to help you keep on task.

All in all if you have a DS and are a Golden Sun fan, a RPG fan or both then this title is worth a pickup.

Buy Worthiness: $$$

Epic Mickey

Even if you aren’t a fan of Disney you have to admit many of their games are beautifully done and fun to play and from the looks of it Epic Mickey continues that trend. The game was created by Warren Spector who you might remember from Deus Ex and System Shock. The game itself is based on various projects, scripts, character and ideas that never quite made it past the creative offices. What this means is that while there will be a lot of familiar Disney sights and characters in Epic Mickey there are also twists and differences alone with new characters and places within the game.

In a nutshell Mickey is kidnapped and brought to a world that has various reimaging of characters. There are a ton of bad guys including a character called Oswald the Lucky Rabbit who is jealous of Mickey’s success. Mickey interacts with the world primarily by using paint and thinner to create, fill in or erase parts of the world. You can also use the paint and thinner to attack enemies, but it is not always effective.

What’s cool is how you use the paint and thinner effects everything from the quests and items you get to even how Mickey looks and acts. If you use a lot of paint it is considered good and your appearance matches that. If you use a lot of thinner it is considers bad in a sense because you are destroying things and thus you change over time to Scrappy Mickey, while not necessarily evil this is considered the lesser choice.

Overall, this games plays like a platforms mixed in with an RPG and the paint and thinner aspect not only is cool but works well with the Wii. This one looks like a winner and is worth a look.

Buy Worthiness: $$$$

Broke Friday

Nintendo wins this week which isn’t saying much considering. I know most of you will be broke after Black Friday and Cyber Monday, but these two games are still worth a shot if you have the cash. Next up is the countdown to Christmas so stay tuned for more Games to Buy.

Jon Hamblin: Big Ideas Digital

Big Ideas Digital logo
Big Ideas Digital logo

Name: Jon Hamblin

Company: Big Ideas Digital

Profession: Lead Designer

Favorite Classic Game: Police Quest II

Quote: “Ok, the Sierra games weren’t as cool as the Lucasarts adventures, but Police Quest II is a perfect storm of Miami Vice action and procedural pedantry, making it one of the greatest cop comedies ever. Far from the parking violations of the first game, the sequel revolves around Miami Vice-style jailbreaks, kidnappings, terrorism and motel sieges. But the key to Police Quest II’s brilliance is that they let ex-Highway Patrolman Jim Walls design the game. Imagine if Fast and Furious had been directed by a driving instructor (“Sorry Vin, you didn’t check your quadrants before jumping the flaming car into the fireworks factory – we’re going to have to do another take”), and you’ll start to get an idea of what I’m on about. Every time the game threatens to get exciting, good old Jim steps in and shows you how things would really go down. Don’t declare your gun before pursuing a suspect through an airport security metal detector? Shot dead by the Security guard. Challenge the terrorist on the plane without correcting the sighting on your gun at the range? A missed shot and a face full of machine gun kisses. Forget to put on your gas mask while running through the sewers? Death from a pocket of methane fumes.

 

Seriously, this a game in which you can die simply by crossing the road without waiting for the little green man. After a while, I began to think – maybe Jim Walls isn’t a pedant – maybe he’s just incredibly accident-prone. I mean, the poor man must be unable to open a can of beer without accidentally slashing his wrists open, only to be greeted with a giant hovering image of his own gurning face, telling him what a moron he is. Hilarious.”

 

Bio: Big Ideas Digital makes apps and games for all smart phone platforms. If you have great content, we have Big Ideas.

Say What You See
Say What You See

Project: Say What You See: The Collection

Project Info: Our current games project is Say What You See: The Collection, a hidden object-game where you have to find movie titles cryptically hidden as rebus puzzles in beautiful hand-painted scenes. It’s great fun to play with friends in a bar, at home on the couch, or even in the John. Some players have even dreamt solutions to its devious puzzles – why not give it a go and see if you can escape it’s cryptic clutches?


Motivational Monday: Not so Superman

not so superman demotivational poster
not so superman demotivational poster

Motivational Monday: Not so Superman

We understand it is hard to write for the Man of Steal. The character of Superman can go from being able to break a mountain in half to having issues lifting a truck. We also understand that when it comes to video games there must be playability and risk which is why even Superman can receive a beat down. The problem is imagination. Even the Superman video games that were overall well done lacked imagination when it came to why Superman could get curb stomped liked Kick Ass. Unfortunately for some games it was way worse than just Superman’s lack of invulnerability.

Superman Arcade (1988)

This is one of those cases where the game was fun to play and overall well done. However, the issue was how easily Superman could be hurt and even “killed” by the bad guys. I can understand some of the bosses or special enemies, but you could take major damage by being hit by a trashcan. Oh if you thought that was bad I died a little inside when the lady in the pink bunny suit kicked me and took me out.

What was great about this game was it looked really good for the time and the original music from the first Superman movies really added to the game. I also really liked picking the red Superman for some reason. Maybe it made his beat downs hurt less because I pretended it was a weaker clone.

Superman 64

I almost don’t need to type anything because when you see the name of this game you should already know it sucks major ass. Everyone knows this game was painfully bad. Superman 64 had horrible graphics, terrible animation and the worst gameplay since… damn.

The game was made by Titus and was based on the animated Superman show of the late 90’s, but believe me it does not even come close to the show. Lex Luthor has created a virtual Metropolis and trapped Superman’s friends in there and for some demented reason wants Superman to spend most of his time flying through rings with an unreasonable time limit. Perhaps this would be reasonable if the flight controls were good and it wasn’t over done, but on both counts they failed. It was incredibly hard to control Superman’s flight. One minute he flies like he is drunk and the next it’s like he is on crack. Then add in the short unforgiving time limit and the fact that you spend more than half the game flying through rings and you have only scratched the surface of why this game blew chunks.

Superman NES

Oh Lord, can you see a pattern here. In this version of the Superman universe everyone looks like kids for some reason and you get your mission instructions from a talking Statue of Liberty. The game starts off looking kind of like Zelda 2 except with short, plump, children-like characters that Clark Kent talks to for information. Once you have where to go you go outside and discover that the bad guys either knows Clark Kent is Superman or just hates his writing. Here again we get an example of Superman being depowered because apparently bullets can hurt him and he has to jump over them Mario Bros. style.

You had super powers in this game if you could call them that, but they worked more like items that depleted than real powers. You would select the power you wished to use and it only had a limited amount of uses indicated by the energy bar on the top of the screen. Sadly some of the power ups did nothing to even the rank and file bad guys and you had to collect more power ups and health from the bad guys. So let me get this straight, I beat a bad guy who drops my own powers? Well, it’s still better than Superman 64.

Super OWNED

This video is dedicated to the horrible Superman games and the lack of Superness that Superman showed in them. Now there have been a few good Superman games, but like the movies they are far and few between. So until next time enjoy Superman getting owned.

Vern Jensen: ActionSoft

Action Soft logo
Action Soft logo

Name: Vern Jensen

Company: ActionSoft

Profession: Programmer / Game Designer

Favorite Classic Game: Super Metroid

Quote: “It’s hard to pick just one game actually. Super Metroid pretty much ties with Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. I had first gotten into game programming around age 8, making simple programs in Basic, eventually culminating in a maze game and an explore-the-castle game around age 13. It was at this time that I first saw someone playing Zelda on their SNES. The graphics were incredible. The special effect this game had, from rain, to warping between light and dark worlds, were astonishing at the time.

I felt like everything I had done programming was unworthy compared to what I was seeing on the screen. And, once I got to play the game, the gameplay certainly matched the special effects. Super Metroid wins by a couple of points though, just because when I played it, I couldn’t put it down until I had finished it. Everything about this game was awesome, from the graphics to the power-ups to the secrets and bosses. It really had a cohesive “mood” to it that was well fleshed-out. I even own the Boston Pops orchestra soundtrack of music from this game, which is also incredible.

Bio: ActionSoft (www.actionsoft.com) ActionSoft is basically just me. I write retro shareware games. Since I grew up on 2D games in the 80’s, my fondness for those games has remained. I haven’t really gotten into 3D games. My goal is to make the kind of games I would want to play myself, and bring back some of the games from an era long ago that have been forgotten.

Midnight Mansion logo
Midnight Mansion logo

Project: Midnight Mansion port to Windows and iPhone.

Project Info: Midnight Mansion was my first game, released in 2005, and it has gained a following of loyal fans. However, it is Mac-only. My project is to port it to Windows and iPhone / iPad. In the process, Midnight Mansion 2, which was released this last August, will also be ported.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Commercial Wars: Best use of Spider-Man

obama and spiderman
obama and spiderman

Spider-man, Spider-man, friendly neighborhood Spider-Man. Ah, the wall crawler has been a fan favorite for generations and our web slinging hero has been in a ton of video games across pretty much every console system, hand held and computer.

In some instances we just get the game footage and maybe a little music as the name should sell itself. However, some of the commercials for Spider-Man games were just classic for the good and for the bad. Let’s take a look at three different Spider-Man video game commercials and decide which company used him best.

Atari 2600 – Spider-Man

You have to love the eighties. I mean just look at these costumes they are just incredible. Funny thing is Spider-Man’s costume still looks better than Superman’s latest live action version. I love the enthusiasm the Green Goblin has. I mean I know he is crazy, but damn.

Spider-Man 2: Enter Electro

Another live action commercial this time featuring Electro and I must say it looks pretty good regardless of how silly Electro’s costume is. The special effects look good from the electricity to even Spider-Man’s web. Unfortunately, I am left without jokes to make because everything comes together well considering and even the game was fun.

Spider-Man Vote

Alright, you got me. This is not a video game, but you have to admit this is pretty awesome. If you thought ACORN had issues just imagine filling out your voter registration as Spider-Man and you know he votes Democrat so the tea party would be all over him.

My Spider sense is broken

You guys make the call which was the best use of Spider-man?

[poll id=”12″]

Age of Empires III for ten cents

age of empires 3 cover
age of empires 3 cover

You have to love the run up to Black Friday. This is the time everyone tries to outdo each other and we as consumers win out. You might want to keep your eye on the Games for Windows page because they are offering some awesome deals.

Right now you can head on over to the Games for Windows page and pick up Age of Empires 3 for only ten cents. Yeah, that’s right, ten cents. There’s no trick or hidden cost, we’ve already checked it out and had some friends purchase it and it’s legit.

Here’s the info on AOE3:

Immerse yourself in the award-winning strategy experience. Microsoft Game Studios brings you three epic Age of Empires III games in one monumental collection for the first time. Command mighty European powers looking to explore new lands in the New World; or jump eastward to Asia and determine the outcome of its struggles for power. There are no refunds for this item. Digital Rights Management Disclosure. This software uses digital rights management software (“DRM”). DRM may limit the number of times you are permitted to install this software on a computer and/or the number of computers to which you may install the software. To function properly, DRM downloads certain data and files to your computer, which may or may not be uninstalled when you uninstall the software.

So if you are interested in this awesome deal head on over to Games for Windows.

Oh, and tell em Obsolete Gamer sent ya.

Donald E. Marshall: Legacy Interactive

Legacy Interactive logo
Legacy Interactive logo

Name: Donald E. Marshall

Company: Legacy Interactive

Profession: Sr. Producer

Favorite Classic Game: Civilization II, Kings Quest, Archon

Quote: Last night I stayed up late playing Tarot cards.  I got a full house and four people died. – Steven Wright

Bio/Current Event: Donald E. Marshall is one of the preeminent rising luminaries of the video game industry whose incredible imagination and vision are exceeded only by his staggering modesty.  An award winning playwright and writer, Don uses these skills design and produce games that feel remarkably like the TV shows and movies they’re based on.  At Legacy Interactive, he designed and/or produced games including “Murder, She Wrote”, “Ghost Whisperer,” “Mean Girls”, “Clueless,” “Pretty in Pink,” “The Apprentice: Los Angeles,” and “Igor”.  He also produced many of Legacy’s award winning educational games, including “Pet Pals”, “Pet Pals 2”, and “Zoo Vet 2”.

Up to Half off Ubisoft Games

gog good old games logo
gog good old games logo

You like classic games right? I hope so since that’s one of the main focuses of Obsolete Gamer. Our friends over at Good Ol Games are having a up to 50% off sale on a number of Ubisoft games foe this weekend only including, Farcry, Rainbow Six, Ghost Recon and Might & Magic. You can own all those games and more for just about five bucks which is pretty good deal considering you pay more than that for a Wii virtual console game.

Also keep in mind you can try out Good old Games before you buy by downloading some free games so either way you should check it out.

Click on this link and tell em Obsolete Gamer sent ya.

Don’t you love how I tossed in some Wii hate?

Ubisoft GOG sale
Ubisoft GOG sale

John “Loktofeit” Albano: CCP

CCP_on_black

Name: John “Loktofeit” Albano

Company: CCP Games

Profession: Copywriter

Favorite Classic Game: Wizardry: Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord

Quote: Wizardry offers fun hack-n-slash CRPG gameplay with just the right mix of story, progression, risk and reward to keep me entertained even decades later.


Cosplay: Team Rocket

So a few people actually liked the little stories before the sexy pictures, I guess it made them a little happier about the Cosplay. This week you get some pictures from Alienware with descriptions, so it’s like something good wrapped within something awesome. You guess which is which.

Blizzcon 2008

Clan PMS & H20

My first time going and it was a blast. We were with the Dell guys over in the back with our awesome Semi truck. We had a lot of contests and gave out some cool prizes. We had a beat the pro tournament there where fans could play against Clan PMS and Clan H20 which are pictured above. Those guys and gals were really cool and we had a great time. The final day of the show I filled in as MC for a bit and while it took some getting used to I think I did and okay job.

Blizzcon 2009

Blizzcon 2009 Warcraft 3 DOTA contest winners

These are the guys who won our Warcraft 3 DOTA contest. It was a lot of fun working Blizzcon because honestly the people there were so nice and though our section was smaller for this event we still had a great crowd. You may have even seen me testing out one of the laptops on G4TV’s coverage of the event, but for some reason I just can’t find the footage.

Halloween 2009

We were always allowed to wear some type of costume for Halloween at Alienware with a few exceptions. Last year we had a contest for the best costume and it was voted on by other employees. It was good fun, but there was bias. I mean the warehouse guys stick together and my small team had no chance to win. Then again we didn’t dress up; maybe that was part of it too.

Happy Now?

Alright, enough about me and my time at AW on with the pictures!

Via Cosplay!

 

Kim Soares: Nitro Games

Nitro Games logo
Nitro Games logo

Name: Kim Soares

Company: Nitro Games

Profession: Lead designer

Favorite Classic Game: The Faery Tale Adventure

Quote: For me, classic means something from 1980’s. From that era, Faery Tale was the most mind altering experience (along with Elite, of course). I still remember first reading a review that told about the huge game world and freedom to go anywhere.

The experience was nothing short of profound. It was like all the confines of games had been removed. To top everything were excellent graphics, music and audio that the new Amiga 500 could produce on screen.


Bio: Nitro Games Ltd. is a Finnish game developer that produces high quality video games for worldwide distribution. Since its founding in 2007 the company has grown rapidly and become one of the largest game development studios in Finland.

The company focuses on creating interesting titles with strong intellectual property values. Our office is located in Kotka, Finland. Our internal team is comprised of skilled professionals who know what it takes to make a game that is fun to play and easy to sell. We also use some of the best outsourcing partners in the industry.

Nitro Games has just finished working on East India Company a PC-title combining trading, management and naval battles in novel fashion. The game was released worldwide in Q3 2009 by Paradox Interactive. In the game players will enjoy building the World’s largest trading empire and engaging in vigorous battles within a breathtaking cinematic game environment, in both single player and multiplayer modes. You can read more at our Games section.

APB. I Think U Dun Goofed

APB logo
APB logo

Long, long ago in the summer of 2010 there lived a game called All Points Bulletin. It was a large sandbox-ish Grand Theft Auto online that took developer Realtime Worlds millions to create. For many, it was a brief stint of entertainment that was hindered by hacks, broken mechanics, and normal players being dominated by gamers who memorized the map and all the good camping spots. For some, it was a new age Wild West where you could roam the city freely and reap havoc on a grand scale against friend and foe.

Of any game out there it had the most amazing character customization option to date. People were creating Ninja Turtle Gangsters with a van to match. People made pedophile theme gangster with Pedobear etched on the side of their vehicles. The game had so much to offer cosmetic hogs that it seemed it could hold a respectable player base for that option alone at least.

But what happened? APB just didn’t seem to hit its expected highs and hit unexpected lows. Was it because of the game? Was it because there were no commercials or real advertisements? You’d think a game like this would have millions of GTA fans drooling all over it. Unfortunately for Realtime Worlds, this isn’t a dream that would become a reality. On September 16th, 2010 the game would breathe its last breaths as it was announced they would be bringing it offline. All the servers came down and that was the end of this Gangster Vs Vigilante Armageddon.

However…

Recently it was announced that free MMO publisher Gamersfirst was going to resuscitate the corpse of APB and release it within the first half of the next year under a Free to Play model. While it does seem they intend to bring back APB, it certainly feels like it is going to be zombified rather than returning to its true former grace.

The team developing this game under Gamersfirst is Reloaded Productions, a group that has been working on an original RPG for the past year or so and has released nothing under its belt. None of the former the employees of Realtime Worlds are even involved in this Rebirth project.

This Free to Play model wreaks of failure as well. Former players of APB will most likely not even be able to play as their old characters and would have to start over again. Why is that? Well, legal issues from Realtime Worlds indicate that they can’t release databases with customer information so this release of APB would be more of an APB v2.

Exactly how will this F2P model work? It has been confirmed that players may “lease” weapons and purchase a premium status that expands on the creation tools. Let me allow this to set in. It expands on nothing. Reloaded Productions isn’t expanding on the current games creation tools. They are holding back options that this game was released with and are now charging players to unlock the only real great thing this game had going for it.

What was the point of this purchase? Everything about this rerelease suggests that this game will be an abomination beyond all abominations. While it hasn’t been released yet and I am talking out of my ass, the confirmed changes in the team, the monetized plan, and the withholding of the games key feature just makes me uninterested in the future of APB.

How can a developer who didn’t create this game and doesn’t even know how to manage the Unreal 3 Engine that it was based upon make this game a future success. That’s like asking me to work on it your trigonometry homework. Just because I’m part Asian doesn’t mean I know math. The same goes for a “developer” who acquires a game they didn’t work on and expecting to be able to reverse engineer something they don’t understand.

I wouldn’t suggest jumping back into APB if you’re really looking to get into this game again. Just get Grand Theft Auto 4 and play online if you’re looking for a shootout jamboree. With all the mechanic flaws this game had under Realtime Worlds, there is no possible way that Reloaded Productions is going to be able fix any of the mistakes the original team failed to correct firsthand.

Bubble Bobble Double

Bubble Bobble Double
Bubble Bobble Double

Finally a Bubble Bobble game on the iPhone that doesn’t come from an emulator. Taito recently released Bubble Bobble Double which allows players to play the classic arcade game Bubble Bobble and a brand new puzzle game featuring the famous dinosaurs Bub and Bob.

Classic Mode

Bubble Bobble Double
Bubble Bobble Double

The classic Bubble Bobble game plays just like the original. The same graphics are there as is the music and gameplay. It is pretty much a perfect port. The only difference is using the virtual joystick with the iPad. As with most games the virtual stick feels a bit off. Sometimes it feels like the controls are too loose and other times it feels as if you don’t have the quick twitch action that you need in later levels.

The other small issue is they place the game in a smaller window and on the iPad this is not really an issue, but on the iPhone I can see that it would be way too small. Honestly besides that the game is fine and is fun to play and especially on the iPad you don’t really feel a major difference.

New Mode

Bubble Bobble Double
Bubble Bobble Double

The new mode has your favorite dino floating through space as waves of enemy’s approach him. These enemies are the same from the classic game and just like the classic game your job is to capture them in bubbles. You do this by tapping them with your finger and that will trap them no matter where they are on the screen. Then you can either tap them again to pop the bubble or flick them with your finger to send them flying and bouncing around the screen.

So why would you want to flick or pop them? Good question. The enemies come out in different patterns, sometimes they are bunched together and sometimes they are apart. When you burst a bubble it also damages enemies around it whether they are inside a bubble or not. However, when you flick them you can hit other enemies that are farther way or to hit incoming enemies.

As with the original game when you pop the bubbles the enemies turn into tasty treats that give you points. The more chains or combo’s you pull off when killing enemies the higher the values of the fruit. In addition power ups will randomly appear on the screen offering additional abilities or augmenting your basic ones.

The Verdict

I have played both versions for quite a while on my iPad and they are a lot of fun. The original is spot on and the new version is addictive with enough of a challenge to keep me interested. The visuals especially in the new version are impressive with a mix of the classic sprites and the new age neon backgrounds. The same goes for the music with the classic tunes with the old and modern engaging music with the new.

At $4.99 at the iTunes store it is worth a pick-up if you are a fan of Bubble Bobble especially, but also if you are a fan of puzzle games in general.

Paladin Hateraid

WoW pwn paladin
WoW pwn paladin

Paladin Hateraid

I tried being a nice guy, but it’s just not in my nature. I hate a lot of things and it’s time I started telling my adoring public about some of them. In this case since we are talking MMO’s, I will keep it focused on that.

In this inaugural issue we will cover one of the most hated classes currently in World of Warcraft.

My E-Peen was damaged

It’s not that I expected to win every fight, but I believe everyone should have a real chance to win against every other class. I mean when I’m not AFK in Alterac Valley I might want to stab a hoe in the back with my pig sticker.

I bide my time and find a lonely paladin at half health and think to myself, self, you got this. I close my eyes and think back to my boyhood days in the Catholic Church, channel my rage and attack. I’m screaming out in my small basement; “There were no cookies in the rectory!” while I unload on the helpless pally.

It should have been an easy kill. I hit the right buttons. I did everything the SpoonCraft guide told me too, but just as victory was in my grasp he became invincible. “Bubble bitch!” I cried out in a pain worse than that day in the rectory.

So I back away and try to bandage and to my horror it begins to heal itself. Now at full health it helps me relive that awful, awful day from so many years ago as it begins to spin and flash and rape my sorry ass.

As I laid there broken and battered on the ground the evil paladin did something to me I hoped would never happen again.

It was after a hard Friday night of D&D back in college. I had drunk way to many Zima’s and passed out in the lounge. Nicolas, who I had beaten earlier that night with my charisma warrior, was still pissed and wanted revenge. He stood over me, but I was in no condition to stop him as he pulled his pants down and settled his microscopic sack upon my forehead.

A picture was taken to commemorate the event. We didn’t have HD back then so you couldn’t even see his minuscule balls, but they were there, resting just above my eyebrows. I never played D&D after that and that day, like the one in the rectory, haunted me for years.

Now it happened again. That damned paladin tea-bagged me worse than a town hall protestor. I cried at my computer desk and downed a coke zero to try and alleviate the pain, to no avail. I walked away from my computer, defeated and whispered silently, nerf paladins.

Mikail Yazbeck: TaleWorlds Entertainment

TaleWorlds Entertainment logo
TaleWorlds Entertainment logo

Name: Mikail Yazbeck

Company: TaleWorlds Entertainment

Profession: Designer

Favorite Classic Game: Heroes of Might & Magic II

Quote: I remember getting HoMM II, b/c I had to return some stupid mini-golf game that wouldn’t run on my 75MHz Pentium, thank goodness for that, the franchise turned out to be a lifelong gaming love affair that still has me entranced with its simplicity, depth, and wonderful style both visually and aurally. I still find myself playing through the franchise (yes, even #4, go on, chuckle) and listening to the music while I design.


Bio/Current Event: I’m crazy Lebanese-American expatriate doing design/many other things work at TaleWorlds Entertainment in Turkey.

We’re currently designing Project Obvious: The Sequel and handling the release of our upcoming expansion pack to M&B: Warband.

Free to Play. If You’re Going to Fail, Get Better At Failing.

Everquest 2 F2P lol
Everquest 2 F2P lol

For the past six years, MMORPGs have been failing. Be it because the companies believe releasing beta quality games, far-fetched mechanics, or releasing a game that has the savory indulgence of a stale piece of bread, the genre has seen some gloomy days. World of Warcraft has created a boom for many money hungry companies and jaded developers that think releasing a game in this genre will garner them fame and money. Unfortunately, this hasn’t been the case and nothing has been able to compete at the level that Blizzard is currently at.

Let’s face it. Very few MMORPGs have had amazing launches and it is because of this lack luster grand opening that a lot of people just get turned away. How can these companies salvage their investment? How can they bring in money to a sinking ship? How can they increase their gaming audience?

The answer lies to the Far East. It is in this land of Zerg obsessed gamers and mob-grinding gurus that holds the key to America’s salvation in the MMO Market. Asia has been using a model known to many as Free to Play for a very long time. Players are allowed to download the game from a website and jump right in. Sure, there are some restrictions that hold them back from unlocking the full potential of the game but it is a better option than a 14 day free trial.

“But Umar”, you may find yourself pondering, “I know Asia is known for crazy people but this sounds insane! How do the Crazians make their money?!”

Very simple, Little Billy. Crazian MMO Developers make their money from an in-game market place where players can unlock classes, races, potions, cosmetics, and content for real life money. While not every player’s going to feed cash to companies for a game they play for free, they do garner in more money than $15 a month. Some players are so into power gaming and/or cosmetics that they’ll easily throw down more than $15 a month in purchases via this market place without even thinking it through.

Why adopt this model though? The answer is simply because it seems to actually work.

Turbine’s Dungeons and Dragons Online was far from being considered a true MMORPG by many of today’s standards and it was on the brink of extinction. However, unlike the dodo bird, DnD Online was not ready to leave this world. In one last hurrah, it released a Free to Play model and quickly flourished. The game’s income reportedly jumped by double and it felt a chance to thrive. Life began to ebb back into this would be abortion and deliver it salvation.

To follow suit, many MMORPGs began to jump onto the bandwagon. Lord of the Rings Online, while not a failure by many aspects, saw a chance to increase its player base with this new subscription model. It held back many features to free players but the market place allowed them to expand further into the world.

Around the same time LOTRO adopted the model, Everquest 2 wet its feet in the F2P world with Everquest 2 Extended, which included 8 classes, 4 races, 80 levels, and 5 expansions for free.

Now, companies like Cryptic, probably persuaded by Atari, are hitting the F2P model to save their abortion known as Champions Online and also the acclaimed Star Trek Online. Some may know my dislike for Cryptic in general and I don’t want to bore anyone with my vendetta but these games were Free to Play quality on release and never should have been Pay to Play, but I digress. They are now hitting the high road and going F2P.

Those seem to be some of the bigger MMOs released in the past couple of years that really need this chance to boost their communities. One MMO that I am waiting to take the dive into this model is Warhammer Online. The game has been a downward spiral since release and while I doubt EA even cares about the game still (they have been systematically dismembering Mythic) a F2P model for WAR might be able to save it from its dying breath.

Sadly, though, some MMORPGs that haven’t even had a year to fix their abominations are already looking to hit the F2P market as well. Yes, I’m talking about Final Fantasy XIV. It has been reported that they are currently seeking a chance to hit into this model to save their plummeting shares and overall consumer backlash.

I know a lot of people have mixed feelings about this model and some find it “greedy” that companies are willing to push out virtual stores but I don’t find a problem with this at all. Most of these games offer a chance to unlock the full game for the standard $15 a month and no one is forcing you to purchase anything from the marketplace to begin with. Most of the items these games offer aren’t game changing and aren’t required to excel in the game so there is no reason for some of the criticism. However, regardless of whether it is a good model or not there will always be people who will complain.

The Free to Play opportunity that has raged through the past two years seems to be giving players many chances to see more of what is out there than WoW. While it is good for companies to regain their money and enlarge their player base, it also gives players a chance to expand their horizons onto what is out there without feeling guilty for dropping 40-50 dollars on a game that could be releasing in beta quality.

How do you feel about the Free to Play model many MMORPG’s seem to be taking? Would you like to see future games continuing with this setup and if not, why?

What is the best classic space shooter and why?

Space Shooter arcade
Space Shooter arcade

There are a ton of great space shooters from console to PC and it started with a simple premise, invaders from space. Something as simple as shooting down attacking aliens became one of the most played shooters in history. I guess technically since the ship is on earth it is not a space shooter, but you get the point. In years since we have fired off shots at everything from Asteroids to Intergalactic warlords and had a ton of fun doing it.

We are beginning a new season with the Insider Discussion and will be focusing more on ranking, commenting and comparing classic games and what better place to start than with the space shooter. I personally loved the space shooter from Galaga to Tie Fighter to Descent, but honestly there was one game I really got into overall.

Freelancer

I loved this game because it was the first that felt really open ended to me. You started off as a jack-of-all trade’s character and from there you could decide what you wanted to do. There was an overall storyline, but you could go off on your own and fight against various factions. You could be a good guy or a bad guy, a pirate or an agent of the law, a miner, a broker or a thief, there were tons of choices.

There were also tons of areas with wide open space areas full of other ships and hazards. What I really enjoyed was that events happened in each area regardless of storyline or even your presence. You could warp into an area of space and right into a war between two factions and choose to either get involved or run for your life and if you did get involved it would affect your faction.

As you gained money you could upgrade your shipping and become a real badass. Honestly, once you got a few key upgrades you could own pretty much anyone, but it did take time to do that. The controls were pretty easy to use and standard for open space shooters like a Decent Free Space. In addition the battles could get really intense and there was a strategy to winning as well as avoiding battles.

One of my favorite things were the warp gates, especially when you were being chased and had to wait to be able to go through, made for some exciting times. Overall this was a fun game and you could even play with others online with one group on one side of the galaxy and another on the other side. Perhaps it was not the best space shooter of all time, but it was true enjoyment for me and a game I will remember for a long time to come.

Panel Choices

Defender

Chris Skaggs from Soma Games wrote: Does Defender count? (and Stargate) I think that game was a fantastic and unique vision of the space shooter that did something really unique.

Life Force

Justin Melendez from Lan Slide PC’s wrote: Life Force for the Super Nintendo was one of the coolest space shooters ever made. Not only did it have awesome power ups and a two player mode, but the entire game takes place inside the guts of a giant alien. If that isn’t awesome I don’t know what is.

Xevious

Juan Gril from JoJu Games wrote: If you include Shoot’Em Ups, I think that would be Xevious for me.

Asteroids

Aaron Hunter from Playtechtonics Inc wrote: All I can think of as an answer is ASTEROIDS! But that’s probably because everyone says the control system in Starport is very similar. So if you like asteroids, check out Starport.

David Warhol from Realtime Associates wrote: I like Asteroids.  The mechanics of the rocks getting smaller and more dangerous is great, and the physics of the ship really good too.  Space ballet.

StarWars: X-Wing

Mike Jorgensen from Zombie Studios wrote: Back at the dawn of time (which I like to call the early 90’s), there was a surge of crappy Flight Sims (including Space Flight Sims). From the chaos, there would arise 2 predators to sit atop the food chain, namely the Wing Commander Series, and the X-Wing Series. These two would embody the very ideals of Survival of the Fittest, with each iteration getting stronger and better than the last (not to mention stealing ideas). Watching the two grow and evolve was like watching Lions and Tigers (and we all secretly hoped for a Li-Ger, which would finally occur in Wing Commander 3 with the talents of Mark Hamill and Ginger Lynn).

In the end, the crown of King Of the Jungle would go to the Xwing Series (and specifically the first Xwing title).

Ok, so let’s strip away the sheer awesomeness of StarWars. You are still left with an engine that;

  1. Runs in 640×480 in 16bit color on 486 hardware (and is VERY versatile for scaling up or down on a relatively wide variety of hardware)
  2. Includes a full suite of gameplay related functionality (such as in-game movie recording and playback, character progression and awards, and those mission prep and planning screens)
  3. Includes an editor for making your own missions, scenarios, decals, textures, and modifying ships.

I can’t help but to re-iterate how significant the first accomplishment was. This was in the days before DirectX, before any abstraction layers, back when Men were Men & Women were Women & game programmers had to write universal binaries for what hardware MIGHT be running their code. That feat is the equivalent of walking into the UN Building and trying each language until you’re talking to everyone.

 

Separate from the capabilities of the engine, the game itself was a near masterpiece. Several missions included a pre-rendered intro. The audio and music was fantastic (but really, what else would you expect from LucasArts audio division). Nearly every actionable piece was animated, and I really do mean nearly everything. The user feedback on committing and completing an action, still stands out today. The beeps on the target lock, the HUD color change when within range, the end dots indicating which guns could probably hit the target. The actual gameplay was easy enough to get your feet wet in the first five minutes, but could take a couple days to master. You could spend days perfecting the little things like when to “set your deflector shields to double front”, or selecting in which pattern your lasers fired, or selecting what type of craft you were flying and what armaments it had.

In the end, the Xwing Series concluded with the Xwing Alliance, which included full 16 player support (OVER DIALUP NO LESS), frigate combat (with Turret and AI support), and more realistic physics (which are perfected in titles such as Freespace 2).

If you haven’t played anything from the Xwing Series before, grab the oldest PC you have in the house, throw the demo on, and enjoy the finer points of the 90’s.

Galaga

Grace Snoke from EOGamer wrote: Galaga.  Because it was fun and frustrating to me as a kid.  Okay, I’ll be honest, it’s still frustrating to me now.  It was one of the games that required a lot of thought, planning and quick reactions.  I reacted, just sometimes not quick enough, or not agilely enough and would end up dead so quick.  I admire the folks who have set world records in that game.  It would drive me insane to attempt that.  I just don’t have the patience required for it.

What is your vote for best classic space shooter?

Sara Wendel-Örtqvist: Paradox Interactive

Paradox Interactive logo
Paradox Interactive logo

Name: Sara Wendel-Örtqvist

Company: Paradox Interactive

Profession: Content Designer (scripting, writing and other)

Favorite Classic Game: Little Big Adventure 2

Quote: I played it when it was released in 1997 and I hadn’t even started to learn English at that time, so my mother helped me understand what the characters said. I remember memorising several lines of dialogue and repeating them to my mother so I could get a translation. It is still the best game I ever played, mostly because of all the great memories I share with my mother.

Bio/Current Event: I studied Games Development – Design at the University of Skövde and graduated in 2009 with a B.A. of Media. I currently live in Uppsala with my boyfriend and commute to Stockholm. It takes about four hours every day so I have plenty of time to listen to music and read good books.

Games to Buy: Console Edition: Nov 21 2010

video games store
video games store

A new name and a new way of doing our weekly report on games coming out the following week. With so many games out there the fact is some will be worth the cash and some will not be. Beyond that some games may be worth picking over the others and so we have come up with a dollar sign rating system. One $ means it can wait until it’s in the bargain bin and five $’s means you should be waiting in line to purchase it.

This week we have a good mix of new games and classic games being released, in fact pretty much every game is either a follow up of the old or a remake of an old game. This is just more proof of how important classic games are. So sit back enjoy the trailers and commentary and get your wallet warmed up.

Gran Turismo 5

With over 1000 cars and 71 courses to choose from Gran Turismo 5 is a racers wet dream. Sure, there has been a ton of delays for this game but with the way it looks now it seems to be worth the wait. Of course you will be able to race basic cars from Honda and Ford, but you will also be able to get behind the big boys like the Lamborghini Murcielago and McLaren F1. A ton of brand new tracks have been added including the Top Gear test track and many more tracks offering night driving and the new dynamic weather system. All in all if you are a racing fan or just a car aficionado and have a PS3 then you have to pick up this game.

Buy Worthiness: $$$$

Donkey Kong Country Returns

I have to bow to the Wii on this one because I loved the original DKC and this version looks incredible. Donkey and Diddy are back and you have never seen two apes go through so much for some bananas. The game is as massive as it is beautiful offering various lands including a jungle, beach, ruins, caves and a forest. As with the classic Donkey Kong Country the environment matters from knowing where and when to jump to the assortment of enemies on the screen and in the background.

This game brings back all the love and frustration of the original. Honestly, if you are not a pro platformer or haven’t played DKC before you might have a hard time because this game is tough. The mine cart level alone can drive you as crazy as Ninja Gaiden did me. In addition, even the boss fights will not be simple and it takes timing and recognizing the right pattern to win. However, it is totally worth it and with the visuals, the music and the awesome controls Donkey Kong Country is a must have for fans of the series and platform game lovers.

Buy Worthiness: $$$$

Splatterhouse

If you love beating the holy hell out of demons and monsters then this game is for you. The folks over at Namco Bandai have taken a bit longer than expected to release this game and they have gone through some troubles, but all in all the new Splatter house looks to be a fun game.

The game pretty much is a reboot and you play as Rick who was murdered when his girlfriend Jennifer was kidnapped by the evil Dr. West. As you lay dying a demon mask bonded with your body brining you back and now the two of you need each other. Rick needs the masks power to make his way through the horde to his girl and the mask needs rick to feed it the blood of pretty much anything.

The visuals look really good and the game is more than just blood and guts, though that is most of what it is. There is also a puzzle component to the game and you have to take time moving through some levels. However, what makes the game is the gore and you can pull of spectacular murder moves on your enemies and use the environment to take them out as well.

All in all if you liked the original and have a flair for eviscerating people then this game is worth a pick-up.

Buy Worthiness: $$

Honorable mentions

We have a bonus this week, two classic games that are sure to give you some enjoyment.

Crazy Taxi

The incredibly fun taxi driving game from the Dreamcast is back. Choose your driver and transport your passenger across town in the craziest manner possible. This game is loads of fun and it’s good to see this Dreamcast game coming to the 360.

Worms: Battle Islands

War on an epicly small scale, take control of your worms and battle against your friends using tons of different warfare tactics. Believe me, don’t let the cute voices and visuals fool you. In Worms you have to have some strategy or you will be…err worm food.

Low Balance

So that’s this week’s top buys. We will be back next Tuesday with another rundown on what games to buy.

Marcus Hswe: Tandem Learning

Tandem Learning logo
Tandem Learning logo

Name: Marcus Hswe

Company: Tandem Learning

Profession: Director of Client Services

Favorite Classic Game: SEGA Genesis Electronic Arts FIFA Soccer 1993

Quote: Once you reached a level of mastery (i.e. cheats), you could be Cameroon and win the World Cup. Plus, it was cheap entertainment until we broke the game. The graphics at the time were average but the functionality and flexibility in play was fairly unusual for the time.

Bio/Current Event:
Tandem Learning designs learning solutions that are infused with strategic and creative instructional and game design. Our focus on the learner experience, along with our expertise and passion for immersive learning and serious games, can help you shift the training you have to the learning that will inspire your organization.

Tandem Learning recently launched its Looking Glass® Game Engine. The Looking Glass® Engine is a customizable gaming engine that integrates scoring, leaderboards, team creation, live chat, polls, assessments, discussion boards, and more with a full back-end tracking and reporting tool. The engine has the ability to be customized with additional features and graphics based on the need of each uniquely designed game experience. Tandem Learning licenses the engine and develops customized gaming experiences that utilize the engine.

The competitive game engine was recently used for an Alternate Reality Game (ARG) called Dr. Strangelearn’s Learning Laboratory, which was played in conjunction with the eLearning Guild’s DevLearn 2010 conference in San Francisco.

Motivational Monday: Knock Offs

knock offs demotivational poster
knock offs demotivational poster

Motivational Monday: Knock Offs

Sometimes you just want the prestige of having something popular, at the top of its game. You want everyone to know you have it and have no shame in showing it off. Unfortunately, for many of us obtaining the best is not always possible. Thank goodness for knock-offs.

The knock off is as old as time and it is the art of copying something good, but not good enough that it has the quality of the original. Knock offs can be found in everything from shoes to clothes to electronics and video games are not immune to the knock off. This week we take a look at some of the knock offs that has made their way into video game history.

Now before we begin just a warning. The term knock off can upset people especially those who created something they were proud off. In many cases the court or the court of popular opinion deemed that something was not a knock off. However, I call em as I see em so enjoy.

K.C. Munchkin

I have seen a number of Pac-Man clones in my day, but this one has an interesting story. The Munchkin video game was created for the Magnavox Odyssey. As you can see it looks a lot like Pac-Man, but it was different enough. The problem came because Atari was exclusively licensed to create the home version of Pac-Man, but Munchkin came out first. In 1981 Munchkin was released and Atari sued. At first the courts refused to stop the sale of the game and then the following year on appeal ruled in favor of Atari. Strangely enough the release of Pac-Man by Atari turned out to be a major failure.

The Great Giana Sisters

So why would you try to copy Mario Bros? Why not? The fact was that Nintendo had a hit on their hands and in all likelihood the game was not going to be ported to the personal computer. The Great Giana Sisters was developed by Time Warp Productions and was to become available for systems including the Amiga, Atari ST and Commodore 64.

The game looked and played a lot like Super Mario Bros. at least in the first levels. Also, it didn’t help that on some covers was the sentence; “The brothers are history.” Yeah, it probably was not a good idea to taunt Nintendo who retailed with a Bowser size lawsuit and got the sisters locked down.

Funny thing, the Great Giana sisters is going to be available on the Nintendo DS.

Munch Man

I really don’t want to call this game a knock off because I owned both it and the Texas Instruments TI-99/4A that it was released for, but it was loosely based on Pac-Man. The cool thing was the differences including the fact that you were trying to connect links to form a chain not eat dots. Also the ghosts in the game, called Hoono’s change from level to level. As the game continues your enemy gets much faster than you and their vulnerability time is greatly reduced.

I loved Munch Man as a kid, the sounds of the game was so trippy to me. Come on, that sound when he eats the bad guy? Classic!

Imitation is the most sincere form

Intellectual property is important and as a writer I understand this even more. With that said some of these games were just great fun and I am glad they were made. There are tons more knock offs or clones out there. If you want us to do an article on them drop us a line.

Commercial Wars: Best use of Awesome

awesomeness demotivational poster Barley
awesomeness demotivational poster Barley

A great commercial like a great movie trailer can really hype people up to go see or buy it. Sometimes the video is much better than the game, but sometimes you are surprised to find the trailer matches the film. When a company takes the time to put real money and effort into a video game commercial and it comes out awesome it earns respect regardless of the game. This week we take a look at some of the best video game commercials that just look awesome in the way it was put together.

Sega Dreamcast: Thief

The Sega Dreamcast was one of the most awesome consoles that never really got the credit it should have. This commercial embodies the awesomeness of the console and the games behind it. You have to love when a company takes a movie-like approach to a game. The action, the humor and even the dialog all match and you spend the entire time into what’s going on. By the time you see the final splash telling you about the Dreamcast you’ve already purchased it.

Call of Duty: A Soldier in All of Us

Sure, this is a brand new commercial, but as we said Obsolete Gamer profiles good games regardless of when it was made. In this case the game takes a cool thought that we are all playing this war game and we come from different backgrounds. I love the fact that they add many different types of people and it comes together so well that you have to give it its praise. There was just enough humor and spirit to complement the action, beautifully done.

Halo Reach: Deliver Hope

Yet another modern game and yet another spectacular display of visuals with a perfect blend of music, heart and action. You did not need to hear loud booming explosions. You did not need to hear the screams of the dying. You did not need to hear one word, all was told to you visually with a light side dish of audio mastery. Yes, a commercial can do all that and “Deliver Hope” did it.

Vote or Die

Here we have three different action oriented videos that deliver awesome and so much more. Now the question is which one of the three did it best? The choice is yours.

[poll id=”11″]

JerseyJosh: Game Casa

Gamecasa.net logo
Gamecasa.net logo

Name: JerseyJosh

Company: GameCasa.net

Profession: Staff Writer , Executive Editor, Talent

Favorite Classic Game: The Legend of Zelda – NES

Quote: Zelda was the first game that got me to think and prove I was the smartest.  Beating that game was my greatest accomplishment until the first time I got to second base.


Misty Matonis: CCP

CCP_on_black

Name: Misty Matonis (CCP Fallout)

Company: CCP

Profession: Associate Community Manager

Favorite Classic Game: Seven Cities of Gold

Quote: I’ve been a gamer ever since my mother brought home a classic Coleco Pong console when it was first released. We progressed to the Atari VCS and Colecovision, but my best gaming memories are when we got the steaming hot Atari 800XL 8-bit computer. I spent entire weekends playing Steve Meretsky-designed Infocom games, but my true obsession was with Danny Bunton’s Seven Cities of Gold. This game was absolutely amazing for its time. You are an explorer out to discover the New World and bring back riches to the Queen of Spain. You just can’t sail west and get lucky. The brilliance of this game is the unique quality it had for its time: random maps, but very intelligently done random maps. Rivers would flow from mountains, villages, cities and towns would team on their shores and on coast lines. You can bribe chiefs to get their gold, or enter town swords killing everything in sight, but there was consequence. If you had a bad reputation, natives might not want you around, and getting gold would become increasingly difficult. There was even seasonal changes, and storms that could wreak havoc on your ships when at sea. And the Queen? She was never satisfied. But I always got my promotion. Eventually.

Shaun Norton: Sandbox Strategies

Sandbox Strategies logo
Sandbox Strategies logo

Name: Shaun Norton

Company: Sandbox Strategies

Profession: PR Manager

Favorite Classic Game: Metal Gear Solid

Quote: This game blew my mind the first time I played it, which was via a demo disc in a gaming magazine. It was unlike anything I had played before, a remarkably polished game with an intricate story and incredibly satisfying controls and gameplay. I was hooked the second I popped the disc in, and it was one of the first games where I not only became engrossed in the story and the struggles of the amazing characters and cast, but that I also took hours and hours to replay. I was obsessed with successfully sneaking around unnoticed, which would also trigger just minor changes in dialogue or cut scenes, and I couldn’t stop playing until I unlocked the stealth and the bandana upgrades. This game basically kick started me down the path to becoming the passionate, ‘core’ gamer I am today.


Super Castlevania IV OST

Super Castlevania IV OST

If you haven’t checkout my review on Super Castlevania IV go see it now. SCV4 was one of my favorite games on the SNES and it featured a ton of great tracks. The music sounded great for even today, but back then it was really incredible.

Super Castlevania 4 OST

 

The game features a number of remixes of themes from previous games and many new ones. The Castlevania soundtrack is one of the best in the gaming industry.

Super Castlevania 4

Super Castlevania 4 box
Super Castlevania 4 box

Super Castlevania 4

You know you have a great game when it is fun to play years later and that is exactly the case with Super Castlevania IV. Created by Konami, CV4 was the first Castlevania game for the SNES. It was released on the Super Nintendo in late 1991 to high praise by both fans and reviewers.

Going Japanese

Super Castlevania 4 Statue
Super Castlevania 4 Statue

Before we get into my replaying of the game let’s talk about the Japanese version. In Japan the series is called Akumajō Dracula that officially translates to Devil’s Castle Dracula. There were also a number of changes between the Japanese version and the American version including the use of crosses on top of the tombstones, the misspelled name Dracura on the tombstone in the title video was changed to unreadable text.

There were also some level changes which made me a sad panda including changing pools of blood from red to green, removing the blood dripping from the title screen and changing the topless statue in level 6 of the game. Strangely enough the monster called Medusa remained topless however her nipples were removed, how kinky.

Something Old, Something New

The story of Castlevania pretty much remains the same. You play as Simon Belmont the legendary vampire hunter that has come from a long line of vampire hunters. It has been 100 years since Dracula has roamed the earth and his alarm clock just went off.

The Super Nintendo allowed a lot of cool changes to the Castlevania series over its predecessors. One of the first notable changes was the eight directions Simon can swing his whip allowing more flexibility. Second you could keep your whip out to use it like a shield and a weapon to slowly kill the monsters. More whip fun included being able to latch onto grappling points to pull Simon up or down and swing from place to place.

This game featured sub-weapons like the knife, cross and holy water that you could find by destroying Dracula’s Bed Bath and Beyond candles. You would need to collect hearts which represented your ammo for those weapons. There were also power-ups for your whip as well as normal items like health replenishment and one that killed on the enemies on the screen.

Setting the Stage

Super Castlevania 4
Super Castlevania 4

What really made this game stand out was the improved level design. Not only were the graphics improved, but the things going on within the level were new and exciting. Some of the coolest things were the room which rotated when you attached your whip to a grapple point. Another awesome stage was where you ran across wooden planks that would fall with the entire room spinning behind you. It was level design such as this that made the game so fun to play.

I loaded up Super Castlevania and it took me back to my teenage years. It only took me a moment to get use to the controls again and even though you cannot make moves like you can in SOTN it was pretty easy to control Simon. In SCV4 you could control the way you jumped and moved even in midair which was handy since there were tons of bats, birds and ghosts in the way ready to knock you to the ground.

If you are a veteran of pretty much any jumping platform game then Castlevania would not seem too hard. A lot of the challenge came when you never played before and did not know what to expect, but that is half the battle. There were a number of close jumps and run and gun sections of the game that put your skills to the test. As for the bosses, most of them had an easy pattern that after a few tries became real easy.

The Sound of Death
[mp3player width=600 height=100 config=fmp_jw_osg_config-xml.xml playlist=super-castlevania-iv.xml]
The music from this game was just awesome. It sounded great back then and still today with many remixes from previous Castlevania games. The music just fit so well with the stages and did not get boring or annoying. If you want to listen to more tracks from this game head on over to The Music Hall and listen to the Super Castlevania IV OST.

Final Thoughts

Super Castlevania 4
Super Castlevania 4

The game had a mix of feeling long and short at the same time. There are 11 stages in all and if you never played before the game seems long, but if you run and gun through the game it can seem pretty quick. The monsters including the bosses were mixed in from various sources including horror movies, Greek Mythology and the bosses you would expect Dracula to team with like Frankenstein and The Mummy.

As for difficultly the only hard part was not being knocked off a platform by a bird or bat. Honestly, besides that even Dracula himself was not hard to put down. The key is keeping your health high and swinging your whip at as many walls as you can because there are a ton of hidden rooms and secret items to help you out.

You can of course play Super Castlevania IV on any emulator or you can get it on your Virtual console. Overall the game is fun to play and the soundtrack will have you humming the tunes while laying the beat down. I give the game an overall score of 9.0 out of 10.

Nikolaus Gebhardt: Ambiera

Ambiera Software Development logo
Ambiera Software Development logo

Name: Nikolaus Gebhardt

Company: Ambiera

Profession: Software Engineer

Favorite Classig Game: Wolfenstein

Quote: Back then, Wolfenstein was one of the first games with ‘real’ 3D graphics, although today this is only considered 2D. I was amazed by that technology, and played though the game countless of nights. When I finished it, I started creating levels and modifications for it, which maybe lead me to working in the game industry.


My Favorite Games: Part 9

It looks like the R3Play report will have to wait a day or two, the pictures are a pain in the arse to upload and my opportunities to do so are limited. There’s really not a great deal to see anyway, unless you were there and want to see if you can spot yourself! So in the meantime… continuing with My Favourite Games, here’s the penultimate list:

Blast Corps – Nintendo 64 (1997)

Blast Corps - Nintendo 64

This was Rare’s first game for the N64 and what a start! It would also end up being the first in a long, amazingly successful run for the company on that console which many said rivalled that of Nintendo themselves, and with titles like this on offer it’s hard to argue. The premise was simple – a truck with leaking nuclear missiles has been set on a straight path to a safe detonation area. Your job is to demolish everything in its way. Yes, it sounded awesome and happily it played awesome too! Featuring eight unique vehicles custom-built for the express purpose of destroying stuff including three robotic suits, there can’t be anyone who didn’t enjoy the mayhem offered by this game, and the stages were punctuated by time trial stages which featured yet more vehicles and usually involved a race of some sort. Amazingly playable, superb fun, and a thoroughly unique and brilliant soundtrack too!

Fantasy World Dizzy – Spectrum (1989)

Fantasy World Dizzy - Spectrum

Poor old Dizzy seems to be the subject of a lot of vitriol among certain sections of gamers but I, and I’m pretty sure many others, loved his flick-screen, budget-priced adventures. They were available on most other computers of the time but the Spectrum is where the Dizzy games were most at home and it’s here that I played them. The first two were great but the Oliver twins really hit their stride with this third game. Featuring the largest gameworld yet, a broader variety of locations, a more forgiving difficulty curve, hidden secrets, and perhaps most importantly, the introduction of The Yolkfolk, Dizzy’s third adventure put many full-price releases to shame! It would also be the final game in the series to be handled by the Olivers and later games suffered as a result.

Magical Flying Hat Turbo Adventure – MegaDrive (1990)

Magical Flying Hat Turbo Adventure - MegaDrive

Psycho Fox has always been one of my favourite platformers and I was disappointed it never got a sequel, so imagine my joy at discovering that its creators, Vic Tokai, had released a similar game on the MegaDrive! This splendidly-named game had many of the features of Psycho Fox (including, perhaps most importantly, the bendy poles) and wrapped them up in a different setting. Replacing our collection of useful animals here is a boy wearing the ‘magical hat’ of the title, which doesn’t really let him fly but it does enable him to float, Bomb Jack style. Magical Hat was released in the West too, but with a radical overhaul of its graphics and theme. The renamed Decapattack instead uses a cartoony-horror theme and is still a great game, but I prefer this Japanese original any day of the week.

Shinobi – Master System (1987)

Shinobi - Master System

This first Shinobi game may have eventually been a little overshadowed by Revenge of Shinobi on the MegaDrive but it’s still a fantastic game, and this Master System version is my favourite. It’s impressively faithful as a conversion whilst also making life a bit easier for us by adding a life-meter as opposed to the one-hit deaths of the arcade game. It does suffer a bit from sprite-flicker (although you could say that about most MS games) but that’s pretty much the only criticism you could level at this classic run n gunner with its five, dual-plane, ninja-infested stages. It’s unquestionably the best game of its type on the system and still plays as good as it ever did. Now if only I could beat that damn final boss!

Starflight – MegaDrive (1991)

Starflight - MegaDrive

Those who know me will be aware that my favourite game of all-time is Star Control 2 on the 3DO, but if it wasn’t for Starflight, I may never have even discovered it! I’ve only ever played the MD version which arrived some five years after the PC original, but it certainly appears that this is where some of the inspiration for SC2 came from. It too is an epic space-exploration game featuring tons and tons of star systems containing varying numbers of explorable planets and features alien races, some friendly, some hostile. It’s not on the sheer scale of SC2, with less stars, less aliens, etc, and doesn’t have the hours of speech or top music of Toys For Bob’s great game, but, considering when it was made it’s arguably even more impressive. Starflight is an engrossing and original adventure and one that it’s still easy to get sucked into today.

I’m not really in an R3Play mood at the moment, so the last part of what will be my Top 50 Favourite Games will be posted tomorrow! 🙂

Murder in Grizzly Hills

Murder in Grizzly Hills

It was a warm day as the valiant rogue, Mascot galloped across the Grizzly Hills atop her trusty ram, Sarah Palin, when she heard some grunting in the woods. Being ever curious and a bit of a pervert she dismounted, went stealth, and hid by a tree.

It was a sight that would make any D.E.H.T.A member cry:

World of Warcraft
World of Warcraft

Now, it was no secret that Mascot ate meat, but as she was trying to score with one of the female D.E.H.T.A member’s, she had to play the part. However, one thing that disturbed her was how one of the Amberpine Woodsmen seemed to be punching the ass of the downed Tallhorn Stag.

Watching the men punching and grunting and stabbing was turning poor Mascot’s stomach. She almost wanted to kill the woodsmen until she noticed something in the background.

World of Warcraft
World of Warcraft

It was a so-called Imperial Eagle, known as the snob of Grizzly Hills the Eagles were feared by man and beast alike. Mascot was astonished as she gazed upon the majestic eagle as it stared at the woodmen chopping and punching the stag to bits.

Mascot knew the look in the eagle’s eyes; it was the same she herself has had after killing a bubble bitch in world PVP. While there was no smile on the eagles face it was happy the stag was dead and took pleasure in watching it be torn apart.

There was nothing Mascot could do, this was natures will carried out by man’s hand. After all, she had more killing to do in the forest and then it was off to the hot springs for some spying on the showering D.E.H.T.A ladies.

As Mascot crept away she took one final look at the eagle who she just then realized could see her. For a moment they human and animal were connected to each other mentally. The eagle whispered into her head.

“If you tell anyone what you have seen here, you’re a dead mother f*cker!”

Lee Amarakoon: UTV True Games

UTV True Games logo
UTV True Games logo

Name: Lee Amarakoon

Company: UTV True Games

Profession: FX Artist / Heaven Mage

Favorite Classic Game: Herzog Zwei (Sega Genesis, 1990)

Quote: It’s the game that got me into playing strategy games.   With only 1 ship, you transported tanks and other units to the different bases scattered around the level in order to take over sections of the map.  The ship had limited fuel, so expanding was very important since you could also refuel at the captured points.  The ship could transform into a robot so you could attack the ground also.   Since it was 2 player split screen the fight for territory control was great.   My friends and I would look over at each other’s screen to see who was doing what.  This trained us later for GoldenEye 🙂

Bio/Current Event: Currently making class abilities for Faxion Online.    If you’ve always wondered “how do they come up with the spells?” I want  to take you through an example spell creation in Faxion Online.  The spell design and implementation is done by Designer, Jonathan Pollard,   he provides me with a list of abilities with a description on what each one does.    For this example we’ll use Hellfire: summon demonic flames to burn an enemy, inflicting Unholy damage.   The ability asks for demonic flames and flames always look cooler in an unholy green.  Image1 shows the textures used in the spell,  they were created in Photoshop with brushes and various plug-ins.

GAMES COMING OUT FOR CONSOLES: NOV 16TH 2010

EbGames rack
EbGames rack

Ah, turkey time is almost upon us and though we are still playing our way through Black Ops there are a few good games being released next week that are ready to suck the cash right from us. This week we are looking at three games that are worthy of a purchase, but let’s take a look at them first and then decide.

Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood – PS3

What is better than an assassin, a team of assassin’s.  In Brotherhood we continue where ACII left off with Ezio Auditore da Firenze and a new villain who is the son of the villain from part 2. There have been a number of changes to combat and added horse-riding moves and abilities. In addition the Desmond storyline continues with promises of real answers and some conclusions being given. The graphics look even better this time around and the city is like three times as large. If you liked any of the other Assassin’s Creed’s you should definitely pick this one up.

Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit

EA and the development team wanted to bring the NFS franchise back from the dead. They admitted that the last game was just not what it should be and blamed it on a number of things including how long they were allowed to work on it. Now with more time the team has put together a game they hope will restore NFS to its former glory.

First off, they didn’t go the open world route which so many racing games are doing these days. Instead the team focused on making sure the tracks were designed to the max from the ground up to look stunning and have the fun factor that racers want.  The game is about chases and it goes both ways. Play as the cops and the racers and level up on both ends in single player and pick your side in multiplayer. With a ton of awesome cars and incredible locations to race em this game might just put Need for Speed back on top.

NBA Jam

Sometimes the best thing to do is nothing and that is the motto used in creating this new NBA jam. If you played the old arcade versions the only differences you will notice is new NBA players and updates to the visuals. The thing is that is a good thing. NBA Jam was fine the way it was and now you can continue the legacy of over the top dunks and full court jump shots. Put together your perfect duo by choosing from 30 NBA teams all licensed and trademarked. Sure, it is not 2K11, but it isn’t supposed to be. This is NBA Jam, home of the BOOM SHAKA LAKA.

Insufficient funds

Those are the top picks this week and we are sorry you will yet again be inviting your girlfriend over for chicken hotdogs and a bittorrent movie. However, with all these great games who needs a girlfriend, that’s why they invented X-Tube.