microsoft

Xbox 360

Reflections: Titanfall Beta

Ejecting out of your Titan while it turns into a nuclear bomb and torches your opponent is absolutely thrilling. You can actually sabotage Titans while in soldier mode which keeps the playing field a little more even. My favorite moment over the 25 matches I participated in was ejecting out of my Titan, launching my would-be Titan-jacker into the air, and then shooting him in the face before I hit the ground. I’ve never played a game where I could do that.

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Xbox One

Killer Instinct

All in all, Killer Instinct is pretty disappointing for a next-gen release, especially since the game is a glut of microtranscations. If you want the full game, it’s a standard twenty bucks. You can also just buy the individual characters if you want, which would be really cool if there were more than seven to choose from. If you want everything the game has to offer, which basically boils down to a couple of aesthetic character accessories and a playable version of the original KI, prepare to double-up on that Andrew Jackson. The only thing I was interested in besides the core game was the original that, unlike everything else, isn’t available separately. This fact, my friends, is worthy of ire right there.

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Xbox 360

Family Game Night 4

Mr. Potato-Head is the host of the game, and though he is not annoying like the bizarre host of the Family Feud Xbox game (the memory of whom has scarred me for life), he also doesn’t add anything to the gameplay. The animations of the avatars are a bit silly, and not dismissed immediately with a button-click, which makes them a little irritating. The play-by-play voice was a constant, “go get ‘em, tiger” kind of happy, which lost its charm over time. Note to developers: if you want to see how a host can be engaging, perhaps even annoying, and yet bring you back for more, check out theYou Don’t Know Jack series of games.

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Xbox 360

R-Type Dimensions

My past experiences with the R-Type games weren’t overly immense. A brief stint at a Timezone in Sydney back in the 80’s , the rental-to-almost-purchase on the Master System 2 in the early 90’s, and a sequel on the SNES (R-type 3). A frustratingly hard game? Some could say that, but I’ll go with exuberantly challenging. For those who don’t know what R-Type is, it is a side-scrolling shooter, think 1942 but with a side-on perspective. The storyline is that there’s the evil Bydo empire invading the universe, you are a pilot of a small ship sent to stop this evil.

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Xbox

Halo 2

Halo 2 was a big jump up in graphics from the first game, and they did add a lot of new stuff like dual wielding and energy swords now. The single player was enjoyable but kinda left you half empty. I liked playing as Master Chief, I thought Arbiter’s bad guy turned good story-line was uninteresting and stupid. If I’m going to play as a alien you killed a ton of in the last game, then I want to kill humans not other aliens.

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Xbox

Jade Empire

The combat is much different than KOTOR giving it more an action kind of feel. It’s good, but it had it’s flaws, though if they did make a sequel I think they could of fixed and tweaked all their mistakes. The quest is also quite a bit shorter than the KOTOR games, but nevertheless, this is one of Bioware’s finest games and if you’re a fan you need to play this.

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Xbox

Fable

Despite falling from the near-perfect tier of first party games, Fable is still one of my favorite games on the Xbox. Not too overly complicated, and the choice system was impressive for the time. I was kinda good from what I remember but didn’t look like gandalf or satan by the end. The combat had a few problems, but this was probably the closest thing the Xbox had to the Zelda series, which had almost no puzzles, but more action and lots of little side-quests.

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Xbox

Half-Life 2

Half-life 2 is a fun and impressive game, with such variety and diversity in the enemies and levels. I think my favorite level was Ravenholm since it had that perfect Halloween spooky feel to it, and was really the only spot I really thought the gravity gun got it’s full use. I do wish I kinda waited until I bought the Orange Box though since the port on that one is much much better than this version. However even a crappy port of great game, can sometimes be a great game if you can tolerate imperfections.

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Xbox

Oddworld: Stranger’s Wrath

I think the game’s only big fault is that the difficulty is a bit bi-polar. It doesn’t gradually goes up, one moment its okay, and then bam you get hit with an almost impossible challenge. I would probably rank OSW higher, but I got stuck on a boss that you couldn’t hurt unless you knocked him off a platform, and you had a whole bunch of shit thrown at you before you could capture him or kill him. A bit of a fuck up I think on their part. Heard it’s coming to PSN though, which gives PS3 owners a chance to play one of the best Xbox games ever crafted.

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Interviews

Halo 4: Forward Unto Dawn Q&A

The first order of business is bringing creative collaborators to the table. Lydia and I brought in Todd and Aaron Helbing to write the script and Stewart Hendler to direct the series. In concert with 343, we developed the story and began to define a visual aesthetic. Our series focuses on cadets in an academy setting; like any great story about adolescence, you’re dealing with varied personalities of the characters struggling to define what will become their adult identity.

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Blog

Killer Instinct Comeback?

Could there be a Killer Instinct remake or sequel in the future? That is the questions being asked after it was discovered that Microsoft has renewed the trademark for the classic fighter. Killer Instinct was originally released by Rare for the SNES in 1994 and featured some incredible combo’s that you could chain together and even connect to your finisher, your ultimate. Also, in its arcade version, was one of the first games to use an internal hard disk drive alongside the games ROM. This was due to the pre-rendered sprites created with Silicon Graphics and the pre-rendered movie-like backgrounds.

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Blog

Raptr’s Minecraft Give-a-way for XBL

Raptr is giving away 2,500 copies of Minecraft on Xbox Live for the Xbox 360 as part of their Raptr rewards program. Mojang’s award-winning game Minecraft will be available on Xbox 360. The Xbox LIVE Arcade version of the game features an innovative new crafting interface, natural controller movements, a full tutorial mode to teach the basics, and an all-new split-screen multiplayer mode on Xbox LIVE. It will be available on Xbox LIVE Arcade on May 9, 2012 for 1600 Microsoft Points.

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Blog

Latest sales figures show all three modern consoles now top lifetime NES sales

Now, according to sales-tracking website VGChartz.com the PlayStation 3 has now also topped the lofty NES numbers. Not only does this put all three PlayStation consoles into the top five best-selling consoles of all-time, but it also means the PS3 joins the Nintendo Wii and XBox 360 in that short list. All three modern consoles have now topped the NES lifetime sales figures, a first for any console generation in history. (Author’s note: All three consoles have also topped the NES software sales figures, according to the same website.)

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Hardware

What are the best-selling video game consoles of all time?

Even with such numbers, however, the lifetime figures of Atari’s classic console have been beaten many times over. While 1996’s Nintendo 64 failed to catch on like retailers had hoped, it still managed to outsell the 2600 in the end my almost 3 million units. Nonetheless, it was tagged a failure by Nintendo compared to previous consoles.

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Editorials

Evolution: Indie development in Russia and one company’s transition to the U.S.

Stephane Gonod – the guy from Gost Publishing – disappeared and half a year later announced himself bankrupt. It is funny that a year ago he set up a new company in cooperation with an ex-Frogster employee and when we accidentally met at a conference, his only words were “Shit happens”. God will judge him.

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Movies & T.V.

Pirates of Silicon Valley movie review

Steve Jobs was just evil to me all throughout the movie. In real life, I still don’t like him, which is funny because I hated everything Microsoft for many years when I was younger, but in reality I didn’t like how he reacted to being informed at the number of record suicides at the Foxconn factories, which make a LOT of Apple products. The transformation this movie shows goes from stoner hippie to egoist pioneer to evil business genius. I just think he’s a real asshole. Through the movie he kept denying that his daughter Lisa was actually his.

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