Defending Charity

defenderSome people might think that it would be impossible to beat a score of 79,976,975, but Billy Joe Cain of Austin, Texas, thought otherwise.  He calculated that it would take at least 80 hours to get 80 million or more points to beat the current marathon record.  He estimated it would take a little more than 1 million points per hour to make it happen.  Having won not only the First Annual Texas Video Game Championships in and setting records recently for VGS for fastest time to a million and most points scored in an hour, he should know.

The game in question?  Defender.

But Biily wasn’t just wanting to break a world record on Defender, he was wanting to do some good as well and with, Josh Jones, his event coordinator and RecordSetter officiator, they settled on raising funds for the Mission Soup Kitchen in Killeen Texas. The kitchen provides meals for homeless and limited income clients.

They called the event “Defender Marathon – Charity Drive” and are seeking to raise $1,000 for the soup kitchen.  The fundraising end date is targeted for Wednesday, Nov. 20.

Billy received numerous useful tips and advice from record setting marathoners, including but not limited to Tim McVey of Nibbler fame, Lonnie McDonald, who is known for rolling Joust scores throughout the U.S., Ed Heemskerk, who is known for his Qbert attempts that were thwarted by power issues, and many others.

The week leading up to the event was plagued with technical difficulties.  A bad ribbon cable caused a number of issues – but once it was replaced, things seemed to go smoothly.    Several sponsors endorsed the event, including local companys —  Chuy’s on Barton Springs and Mr. Natural — and Kings Isle which provided perks for people who donate specific amounts.  VGS also sponsored the event, providing T-Shirts to be given away.

Billy-and-Josh-jones
Billy Joe Cain, left, with Josh jones. Photo courtesy of Josh Jones.

The event was scheduled to start at 10 a.m. Nov. 16, but as Josh told me, Billy was wide awake and ready to go, so they started early, around 8:30 a.m.

Josh posted regular score updates to both the event page for the Defender charity run as well as his own profile.  A little after noon, Billy passed the 4 million point mark.  A little more than an hour and a half later, he hit 5.66 million.  By 10:22 p.m. he passed 15 million points and was still going strong.  At 2:17 a.m. Nov. 17, he had achieved 19 million points and by 10:10 a.m. he was at 26.5 million points.  Billy continued playing, averaging over a million an hour.  At 4:09 p.m., Billy was at 32 million, but then something happened – fatigue set in.

Billy started losing ships at a fast pace and after 32 hours and 35 minutes of game play, the marathon ended with a score of 33,644,725.

Billy posted this on Facebook regarding the difficulty of a marathon:

“In order to get your mind around this marathon run, combine rolling the million points, rolling the 256 ships, rolling the 256 smart bombs, and rolling the 256 waves into one giant mess, and while you’re doing that… keep track of:
– your food intake
– your water intake
– your ship count
– your smart bomb count
– your needed restroom breaks

And general human interaction while having news crews, online webcasts, online and in person interviews…

All the while being streamed on the interweb, managed by a referee, and not sleeping or leaving the machine for any reason without the game continuing to run, at a rate of losing ONE SHIP EVERY 7 SECONDS!”

Billy-and-his-son-during-attempt

One of the important tips Billy received was the he needed to stay mentally engaged, have conversations with others, etc.  Josh, while verifying the score and making sure Billy was okay, helped out with that, bringing in special guests, getting people to call in, reading questions to Billy for him to answer while he played.

After Billy and Josh get some rest, we intend to do an interview with them regarding the event.

Even though Billy didn’t achieve his goals of 80 million in 80 hours, he should still be recognized for setting an impressive record as verified by both RecordSetter and Video Game Scoreboard.  It was an amazing run even if it was cut short.  Congratulations Billy.

While the marathon attempt has concluded, the fundraising is still open for the Killeen Mission Soup Kitchen.  So far $803 of the $1,000 goal has been raised.  Donations can be made here.

[Defending Charity]

[Video Game Scoreboard]

Organ Trail: Director’s Cut (Multi-Platform)

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Just like in Oregon trail, things break on your station wagon, friends get hurt. They may get bit by a zombie and you may be forced to put them down, or they may get dysentary, or one of 9 other diseases, and if you don’t heal them with medkits they eventually die. ~Grace Snoke

Organ Trail: Director’s Cut

Published by: The Men Who Wear Many Hats

Available for: iOS, Android, PC, Mac, Linux and Steam

Reviews on: PC and Android Genre: Choose-your-own-adventure Zombie survival

Released: Jan. 10, 2013

Depending on your age, you may remember playing the Sierra Games classic, Oregon Trail, at school. If you were really lucky, and your parents had a lot of money, you got to play it on an Apple II at home. Personally, I remember playing the game a lot at school and only getting to the end once. It was a hard game filled with a lot of hard choices for a 10-year-old. But it’s a game we look back on fondly.

“NAME died of dysentery” is probably one of the most common quotes people give from the game.

If you miss the game, or just want to revisit the classic, you can download it and play it through Chrome here:http://www.virtualapple.org/oregontraildisk.html

Organ-trail

But if you want to see the modern take on the game, which is what this article is about, check out Organ Trail – a morbid twist on the iconic Oregon Trail game. Produced by The Men Who Wear Many Hats and released Jan. 10, 2013, the game is available for purchase, download and play via iOS, Android, PC, Mac, Linux and Steam. You can play a flash version of their game, for free, here:http://hatsproductions.com/organtrail.html

They describe the game as “a retro zombie survival game. Travel westward in a station wagon with 4 of your friends, scavenging for supplies and fending off the undead; Faithfully recreated it as if it were on the Apple 2. Packed full of zombie mechanics, themes and references; this is a must have for any zombie survival fans.”

I first encountered Organ Trail at PAX East 2012 when it was still in development and was enamoured with the idea and kept an eye on it as it developed. When Humble Bundle had it as a part of one of their Android bundles, I immediately picked up the bundle so i could play and test the game on multiple platforms. It’s rare that I get the opportunity to play games on more than one platform and see how they compare to each other.

Organ-trail

You start the game learning there has been a zombie apocalypse. You have to fight your way to safety. As you are fighting, you are joined by a priest named Clements. He rescues you and asks you if you know of anyone who would be handy in this situation. You and him talk and head to D.C. to pick up your friends…in a station wagon.

I won’t spoil the story too much, but Clements isn’t with you for long, but gives you his diary to help you out, explaining how much of what things you need. You and your party leave D.C. to head cross country with the supplies you’ve scavenged thus far. Just like in Oregon trail, things break on your station wagon, friends get hurt. They may get bit by a zombie and you may be forced to put them down, or they may get dysentary, or one of 9 other diseases, and if you don’t heal them with medkits they eventually die. As you travel from city to city, you have to scavenge for supplies such as food, ammo, fuel, money, medkits and car scraps and upgrades to survive. You can also buy, sell or trade for items at each town or rest stop. Pay close attention to the health of your car and your party members. Rest to heal, but know for each hour you rest you consume food. Repair your car when needed. You can even take on jobs at towns to earn money or parts.

Organ-trail

As you travel, you have to survive driving through a horde of zombies, being chased by zombie dogs and other animals or fighting off bikers and bandits. Factor in a day and night cycle and a weather system and the game becomes very interesting and challenging.

I have yet to reach the final location of the game on the West Coast on either PC or Android, but I have made it decently far before I died. The game creates a custom tombstone with a phrase of your choice when you die and your score can be posted to the leaderboards.

Gameplay: 8/10 for PC; 5 of 10 for Android
There is a huge difference in controls for this game depending on the platform it’s played on. For PC, the controls were great. You were able to aim your rifle with your mouse and move around better than when playing on Android. With Android, you can try to aim the rifle, but unless you are very accurate with your fingers and you don’t slip up, it’s hard to aim and hit the zombies coming after you.

Organ-trail

 

Graphics: 9/10 for both
If you keep in mind that the game is 16-bit and still looks good while being a stylized-retro game, you’ll understand why I rate the graphics 9/10. It’s not designed to look like a modern game. It’s designed to look like a late 80’s game and in that aspect they did extremely well.

Sound: 9/10
Also created in classic, retro tradition, the music fits the 16-bit game. If you’re interested in the game’s soundtrack, you can download all of the tracks, for free from here:http://hatsproductions.com/organtrailsoundtrack.html

Story: 8/10
The story is very simple, very easy to follow and in the same mindset of Oregon Trail. Long story short, you’re traveling West to escape the zombie apocalypse with your friends in a Station Wagon.

Organ-trail

 

Overall: 8.5/10
Packed full of zombie mechanics, themes, references and challenges, this is an extremely fun and frustrating retro zombie survival game. If you liked Oregon Trail as a kid, this is another game you would enjoy on any platform. If you want to test it out before you buy it, play the flash version linked above.

Disclaimer:  Author purchased the games through Humble Bundle and chose to review the game with her purchase.  No codes were given in exchange for review.

Containment: The Zombie Puzzler

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Containment: The Zombie Puzzler

Do you like games wtih zombies?  Do you like puzzle games?  What if there was a game that put those two things together?  There is.  Learn more about Containment A Zombie Puzzler in this review.

Containment - The Zombie Puzzler

I recently acquired Containment A Zombie Puzzler through Indie Royale’s May Hurray Bundle.  Having heard of the game from a number of friends who are game developers as well as hearing about the game being selected for PAX 10 this year and seeing as a part of the bundle, I decided to get it.  Fast forward to July and I finally got around to playing it.

Unlike a lot of zombie games, this is not a shooter.  This is not a see how long you can survive.  This is not a run for your life, you’re going to be eaten by zombies, nor is it close to Plants vs. Zombies.  It’s a true puzzle game WITH zombies and boss zombies you have to fight.

Containment - The Zombie Puzzler

The game has two play modes:  Campaign and Survival mode.

In Campaign mode, you play through three acts which tells a story of how the zombie apocalypse started, what people are doing to survive.  The story is actually pretty entertaining and leads into new puzzles as you go on through the story.  Each act has 5 parts.  Depending on how good you are at puzzles and how fast you are at moving people around in the game will tell you how long it will take you to complete it.  The campaign will take at least 2 to 3 hours to complete.

Containment - The Zombie Puzzler

In Survival mode, you have to complete puzzles quickly.  You get rated on how many zombies are killed, time it takes to complete and how many survivors you have.  There are 3 different survival modes and you can rank up against other s in the game Leaderboard depending on how well you do.

Both versions are a lot of fun to play, but I have to say that Campaign mode gets harder and harder with new zombies and new bosses to defeat at each stage and Survival mode gets harder the further you get into the game.

Containment - The Zombie Puzzler

Did I mention that the zombies can turn your puzzle pieces into zombies?  I think I forgot to mention that.

I mentioned this was a puzzle game.  You get 4 types of non-zombies:  The Soccer Mom (as I call her) dressed in Pink, Army Dude dressed in Green. Police Officer in Blue and Anarchist in Orange.  To defeat the zombies, you have to surround on four sides (corners do not apply) with the same color.  You can surround groups of zombies.  Zombies on the edges only have to have 2 sides (sometimes three sides) before they are killed.  The colors vary each time for the fighters.  As you use them, they disappear and more fill in from the top.  Continue matching colors as you can until you defeat all the zombies.  But you have to do it quickly, otherwise the zombies will keep eating your defenders and you will run out of defenders and lose the round.

Containment - The Zombie Puzzler

You get bonus points for various events in the game, such as if you trap zombies or have a cascade effect. A cascade effect is where defenders drop down into a region and can automatically surround and kill a zombie already there.

Containment - The Zombie Puzzler

A nice feature of the game is you can restart individual blocks in an act, or the entire level.  It’s up to you.  If you fail, you get to chose where to restart as well.

Overall, as a puzzle game, this was pretty fun, especially as it tells a story.  In addition to putting puzzles together, you get bonus items to use (grenades, firebombs, airplane attack, etc.) but you also kill your people with those attacks.  There are also areas where you can interact with the environment to blow pieces of it up.

Containment - The Zombie Puzzler

There are also additional mini puzzles in the game.  For example, in one act, you need to surround several power supplies with defenders of the same color.  While defeating zombies and preventing zombies from walking into the group and turning them.   This game definitely makes you think.

The only downside of the game is the freaky repetitive noises.  The sounds get quite annoying after a while.

If you like puzzle games and zombies, this is a great game to add to your collection.  This is available on PC through Steam, as well as for iPads and other iDevices through ITunes.

For more information on Containment or on the development company, BootSnake Games, you can visit the following websites:

Game Rating: 4/5

You can also check out this video by bootsnake games  to see some gameplay:

First Time to PAX? A Guide to PAX and Other Large Gaming Conventions

Pax guide

Four years ago I embarked on my first trip as a video game journalist and fansite administrator to Penny Arcade Expo 09, or PAX Prime as it is better known.  It was my first solo trip to any convention.  Scratch that.  It was my first trip to any convention at all and I was woefully unprepared for what I saw and my expectations of what I could accomplish as a reporter.

Four PAX Primes, two PAX Easts, a Comicon and a couple other events later, I’m still learning, but I’ve also learned some valuable tips that other newbie convention goers might be interested in knowing before they pack for PAX.

This article is for general convention attendees and speakers who have never been to an event like PAX before.  A separate article for journalists (and boy there are some fun things you learn as a journalist) will be forthcoming a few days after this article.

Pax guide
The beginning of the convention center for PAX Prime on Pike Street in Seattle.

Before I go into the nitty gritty, let me do a TLDR version of the talking points below.  These tips will have details if you keep reading, but if you want the quick and dirty tips, here you go:

  1. Keep hydrated – drink lots of water.  Not soda.  Water.
  2. Bring an extra pair of shoes, or two, and extra socks.
  3. Plan out a schedule ahead of time.
  4. Be in line for panels/events early.
  5. Expect long lines for everything.
  6. Eat at locations a couple of blocks away from the convention center.
  7. Care about your personal hygiene.  Shower.  Use Deodorant.  Etc.
  8. Staff are there to help.
  9. Wash your hands.  Alternatively, use hand sanitizer.
  10. Don’t buy badges from scalpers.
  11. Respect others.
  12. Have fun!

Now, for the explanations and a little added info for those that want more than just the TLDR version.

1.  Keep hydrated – drink lots of water.  Not soda.  Water.

Pax guide

This seems like something we should all know and follow, but trust me, even I didn’t realize how much bottled water and soda was going to cost at the convention center. That being said, buy a case or two of water from Bartel’s or Walgreens and put some in a bag or backpack and carry them with you.  This will help you save money.  But more importantly, after you drink them, refill them.  That way you always have water with you.

Dehydration is one of the problems at events like these because people get thirsty, then grab what is easiest – overpriced sodas or a quick drink at the water fountain.  You are supposed to drink at least 64 ounces of water a day.  At events like these, that often slips past.  Follow it with after parties (if you are old enough) and dehydration can become a medical issue.

Most people don’t realize that dehydration can lead to exhaustion and grumpiness.  So keep yourself healthy and drink water in addition to soda, coffee and any energy drinks you consume each day.

2.  Bring an extra pair of shoes, or two, and extra socks.

Pax guide

This is going to be kinda personal and kind of gross, but having learned the lesson two years in a row of not bringing extra shoes, trust me on this one.

Your feet sweat.  A lot.  Changing your socks midday and not wearing the same pairs of shoes two days in a row will save a lot of wear, tear and blisters from appearing on your feet.  Blisters make walking not-so-fun at all, especially when you’re on your feet a majority of the day.  Trust me. If you have blisters on your feet the second day, the next two days will be miserable.

If you can, and have room for it, bring a third pair of shoes that you can wear for the night time parties.  Comfort is key.  If your feet are comfortable, you will be a much happier person at the end of each day.

Remember, you will be standing in lines – a lot.  Comfortable shoes will make those lines a bit more bearable instead of “OMGMYFEETHURTTHISFLOORISHARD” feeling you get with sandals and flip flops.  You will also be walking around a lot.  Not just to get back to your hotel at night, but to get to panels on opposite ends of the convention center (or at a hotel outside of the convention center).  Just more reasons to have comfort in mind when you’re at a convention.

3.  Plan out your schedule ahead of time.

Pax guide

There are panels you want to go to.  After parties you -have- to be at.  Not to mention game tournaments you want to participate in, people you’re meeting up with, give-aways at booths that are at specific times, etc.

This is when setting a schedule comes in handy – more so if you’re a reporter.  Panels are great to attend – but you have to plan to be at them not only the time they’re at, but an hour or so earlier to be in line for that panel.  For really popular panels, you may need to be in line earlier than that.  I recall one year I had wanted to get into the Tell Tale Games panel.  I found out that people had been in line for four hours.  FOUR.  HOURS.  My mind was blown.

Then there are game demos that may take hours in line.  Star Wars: The Old Republic, before it was released, had a six hour wait line at PAX East and PAX Prime.  Needless to say I didn’t bother with those lines.

4.  Be in line for panels/events early.

Pax guide
At PAX East, you could see the lines for booths easily from the platforms and skybridges over the show floor.

The first two PAX events I attended, I hadn’t even considered attending panels.  I’m not sure why, I think it was more because I was there for the gaming aspect of it.  Then I realized some of the panels were just as important as the games on the show floor.

It was then that the stark reality slapped me in the face.  There were queues (lines marked in color tape) where people would line up immediately once a panel filled up for the next panel.  If the panel was in the main Theater, the line was down below in a huge line waiting area.  People sit down in these queue areas once they’re in line -an hour, two, sometimes even four hours early – play Magic the Gathering, play DS games with each other, talk, write, draw, take pictures – whatever they could to pass the time.

It was mind blowing for a person who had never really been to conventions before to think about people being in lines way ahead of time to see something they wanted to see.  But when I thought about it, I realized why.  Every fanboy/girl wants to see something, they will be in line.  And for some games, some panels, there are a lot of fanfolks wanting to see the panel.  And they don’t want to miss it, so they they try to be one of the first folks in line since there is limited seating for each panel.

A great example for lines for this year – I expect people to be in line for the Assassin’s Creed panel hours before it opens as it will be an exclusive sneak peek at the game.  And let’s be honest, every Assassin’s Creed fan at PAX will want to see it – so it’s logical there will be a line.

5.  Expect long lines for everything.

Pax guide
Sometimes there’s even lines for going up the escalators to get into the exhibition hall.

It doesn’t really matter what event you are going to, when a convention draws 60,000 plus attendees each year, there will be lines.  About the only place I didn’t find a line was the restroom because they had plenty of those around the convention centers.

This tip is the reason why tips 3 and 4 exist.  There were lines to demo games.  Lines to get into the exhibit hall.  Lines to get food.  Lines everywhere the eye could see.  Those lines add some order to the chaos, but not a lot.

The key thing here is patience.  If you lack patience, the exhibit hall, heck even the whole convention, might not be a good place for you.  You will be waiting awhile for anything you want to do, unless you are extremely lucky.

So sit back, munch on snacks, drink some water, chat with other convention goers – maybe make some new friends – while waiting in line.   What else can you do?

6.  Eat at locations a couple of blocks away from the convention center.

Pax guide

If you want to get food fast and cheap, and escape the lines for a little while, take the time to walk a few blocks down to where the train to the Seattle Center/Space Needle is and grab food from the food court there.  You’ll have bigger selection than at the convention center and smaller lines.  Alternatively, there are all sorts of restaurants and little hole in the wall places to grab decent food at an okay price along the way.

There are also a number of sit down restaurants a few blocks away from the Convention Center.  Note: The Daily Grill attached to the Sheraton a block away from the Convention Center has great food, but it is always packed during these events.  Same with Gameworks and the Cheesecake Factory because they are so close.

Now, if you don’t mind standing in line, there are a number of really good places in the Convention Center, such as Subway, a Pizza joint and a Mexican burrito place as well as a smoothie shop.  There is also the Convention Center food service, which has good, but overpriced pizza, hamburgers, salads, sandwiches etc.

So if lines and price aren’t an issue to you, grab food at the center, but if you’re wanting something different, check out the places nearby – you will be pleasantly surprised what a short walk and a nice meal will do for you.

7.  Care about your personal hygiene.  Shower.  Use Deodorant.  Etc

Pax guide

There is absolutely nothing worse than being around a gamer who wears the same clothes day after day without taking a shower – or even with taking a shower – or who doesn’t use deodorant and maintain proper personal hygiene.

To put it in simple terms: It’s gross.

No one wants to stand in line next to someone who doesn’t take care of their hygiene, yet are forced to do so unless they want to lose their spot in line.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, ladies and gentlemen, you do not need to bathe in perfume or cologne.  There are a lot of people in the world who are sensitive to strong smells or allergic to things found in perfume and cologne.  I, for one, get massive headaches and migraines from certain colognes.  Be respectful.  If you’re going to use some, use it minimally.  Don’t spray your clothes down and your body down in it.  Dab it or spray it in a couple locations.  That’s all you need.  Otherwise, we might think you’re just covering up the fact you didn’t bathe so you’re covering yourself in pheromones to make up for it.

8.  Staff are there to help.

Pax guide
Picture is blurry, but the guy in the blue shirt with the word “Enforcer” is event staff.

Don’t know where an event is?  Did you get lost?  Did you lose your friends?  Or perhaps you don’t know where the first aid station is?  Or where does the line start for this panel?  Whatever it is, you will find (for PAX) people in blue shirts that say ENFORCER on them in big letters.  Enforcers are PAX Staffers who are there to help you and to enforce the rules.  There are also nicely dressed Convention Center staff members who are just as nice and helpful.  So if you need help with something, don’t hesitate to ask.

9.  Wash your hands.  Alternatively, use hand sanitizer.

pax guide

I attended my first PAX ever in 2009, and while I washed my hands a lot, it didn’t stop me from catching the swine flu.  Worst. Bug.  Ever.  After that event, hand sanitizer stations appeared all over the convention floor and by the bathrooms.  Wash your hands any time you can.  Play a game, use hand sanitizer afterward.  Play a bunch of games in the arcade, freeplay or other areas, wash your hands or use hand sanitizer.

Do what you can to help prevent the spread of germs.  We can’t stop it completely and a lot of people come back from conventions with some form of conflu (those that don’t are grateful), but keeping your hands clean is a great way to prevent yourself from getting sick.  On that same note, get plenty of rest to help prevent yourself from getting sick

10.  Don’t buy badges from scalpers.

Pax guide

So you, or your friend, were unfortunate and were only able to get a couple of badges for the event, but you want to be there longer.  And hey, that person there on the street corner – okay a bunch of people along the street and in front of the convention center – are selling passes.  You could just buy another one.

Strong advice – take it for what it’s worth – if they don’t look like a gamer, don’t do it.  Even if they do look like a gamer – don’t do it.

In the past few years, there have been unethical individuals who buy badges then counterfeit them and sell them.  Unfortunately, for you, if you buy a counterfeit badge and are caught by event staff, there are no legal ways to get your money back.  You are stuck with the fake pass, loss of funds, and no access to the event.  It sucks.  I saw it happen a lot the past two years.  Don’t let it happen to you.

That being said, there are some legitimate sellers out there – but it’s hard to tell who to trust and who not to trust.

11.  Respect others.

Pax guide

This should be a given, but it does have to be said.  Be polite to others.  Don’t take things that aren’t yours, don’t invade personal space.  Ask for permission before taking pictures of a cosplayer or posing for a picture with them without them knowing.

Don’t shove folks, don’t be rude.

Which leads to the last tip:

12.  Have fun.

Pax guide

That should be tip number one, but really, all of the above things will help you to have fun.

PAX is in a week.  I hope these tips help you out.  If you have any tips, feel free to leave them on the thread in our forum for this article or in the comments section below.

Reposted From with Permission of Grace Snoke. View the original article here – http://www.videogamescoreboard.com/2013/08/first-time-to-pax-a-guide-to-pax-and-other-large-gaming-conventions/

Guild Wars 2 @ PAX East: Videos and Commentary

pax_east_logo

At PAX East 2011, Kayhynn got her first look at Guild Wars 2, complete with live gameplay, at the AlienWare Arena and at the NCSoft Meet and Greet Friday night.

Check out some of the videos here.

 

Article Source: http://www.eogamer.com/content/guild-wars-2-pax-east-videos-and-commentary

Why Do I Game?

gamer dog tag
gamer dog tag

Over the past ten years…okay much longer than that, close to 25 years really, I’ve been asked why do I like video games?  Video games aren’t for girls.

I remember my first response, to my brother who had the Atari in the house “Cuz they look like fun.”  Admittedly I was five years old at the time and the only game I remember us having then was Pac-Man.  He, of course, refused to show  me how to play and I had to figure it out on my own. To his surprise, I had no problems with it.  I was hooked.

Unfortunately, later that year, my brother decided to take apart the Atari.  Please note:  DO NOT DO THIS.  EVER…unless you are a professional.

Fast forward three years to when I was 8 years old.  The Nintendo was out and had been out for two years.  I kept asking for it for birthday, for Christmas, even for Easter I was so desperately wanting it.  I kept being told no, I didn’t need to play video games.  However, Santa didn’t listen to my parents and I got a Nintendo. (thank you santa!)

I played anything I could get my hands on then.  I still have the first three Super Mario Bro. games, three of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle games, Legend of Zelda, Link, Tetris, Dr. Mario, Faxanadu, Lemmings and a handful of other games.  I remember renting some from the video rental store too.  Unfortunately, my mom didn’t quite realize that video games were good for me to be playing and would either limit my time severely, or grounded me from them when I did something wrong.

Eventually, I got into competitive artistic rollerskating and ironically, this got me deeper into gaming.  Roller skating rinks have arcade games.  I’d take breaks and challenge folks to Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat.  I didn’t know the combos.  I didn’t know all the stuff that all the boys were saying.  I just pressed buttons and won, which frustrated them to no end.  I could play with one quarter to their 10 or more and not lose. Unfortunately, I doubt that would still be the case today.  Just not as quick as I used to be.

But I was hooked on games for fun from a very young age.  When I got a computer, I had a few very basic games on it.  When we got a better one, we got a few better games. Then when I was in college, I was introduced to Ultima Online, Everquest, Star Wars Galaxies, etc. And unlike  many girls (or guys who were acting like girls), I didn’t advertise the fact that I was a female behidn my characters . I played to play the game, not to get free stuff from gullible men.

But the question remains, why do I play video games? And the answer is similar to what it was when I was 5: Video games are fun.  They provide an escape from the real world.

Now, I admit, fun is the most important part behind playing games now.  Add in the fact I have written for game sites for the past five years or so, have worked with gaming communities and have helped, most recently, with the International Video Game Hall of Fame, video games are becoming more than just a hobby.  It’s a part of my life.   Something I hope continues to be a part of my life, and my family’s life for years to come.

So why do I game?  Why not?

Ask Kayhynn: Week 2, A Bit Late, But Not Short

World of Warcraft Cataclysm Developers Talk
World of Warcraft Cataclysm Developers Talk

Seeing as World of Warcraft: Cataclysm was released Dec. 7 and most readers and question submitters know I’m a WoW player, I received a number of WoW: Cataclysm related questions which I decided to put together for this week’s Q&A. Questions answered include what were major changes to the game, what do I love/hate about the game, new character experience and more.

Article Source: http://www.eogamer.com/node/189

Ask Kayhynn, Week 1

Ask Kayhynn
Ask Kayhynn

Once a week Kayhynn will answer up to five questions that have been submitted, either through e-mail or through various forums she visits and have a topic talking about this article on it. All questions will be gaming related and can be about her personal gaming history, her take on games, why she plays the games she does, WoW related questions, Ultima Online related questions, questions regarding any games she plays or has played, gaming trivia…whatever. If she don’t have an answer to it, she’ll try to find one, or make up a really creative (and funny) answer despite not having a clue what you’re taking about in the question.

Article Source: http://www.eogamer.com/node/183

CyberNations

Cyber Nations logo
Cyber Nations logo

Ever wanted to run a country? Check out this CyberNations review by Frederick Brunn, aka Clotifoth.

Ever wanted to run a country?  With CyberNations, a massively multiplayer online geopolitical simulator, you can.  Your country interacts with other players’ countries in the general setting of a facsimile planet Earth.  The real game, however, is on a larger-scale groups of these countries form alliances, which are the real nations.  Politics happen, treaties are signed, wars are waged and reparations are paid.  This is the real world.  This is CyberNations.

Read the full article on EOGamer

Article Source: http://www.eogamer.com/node/176