Category Archives: Video Games

Three Things to Say Next Time Someone Tells You You Spend Too Much Time Playing Video Games!

Playing video games is something a lot of people like to do with their leisure time. However, for some reason it tends to get less of a positive response from people who aren’t gamers as a choice of ways to spend time than other forms of entertainment. In some ways, this may be down to the outdated stereotype that games are aimed at children, and adults who play them are not doing something ‘serious’. It could also be the notion that all gamers are playing things that are just intended to kill time without really achieving anything or engaging in a story, due to the rise in the availability of casual and social games.

Those of us who play games, whether it actually is playing fun, challenging puzzle games on something like bigsamo.com, playing MMOs, or engaging in long campaigns in expensively made AAA RPGs, know that we get a lot out of playing as well as being part of the gaming community. Here are three ways to try and explain that to people who have a negative opinion of time spent gaming:

Storytelling in Games is a Serious Business These Days

Remember when TV shows were thought to be a low end, time wasting activity compared to movies? That changed because the level of the stories told and the production values of shows like Game of Thrones, Breaking Bad and The Walking Dead began to make people see TV as actually offering the same quality as movies, but with greater potential for detailed storytelling. In games, the amount of story and the quality of the writing has also improved to a serious level. This means that enjoying a story rich, deep world like The Witcher 3 involves engaging with as much quality fiction as if you were reading a book – only you are actually interacting with the world the creators imagined rather than just hearing about it.

Games Can Improve Skills

Gaming is something with a skills curve, as anyone who has played some of the especially tough games that have become popular in recent years like Dark Souls or Cuphead will attest. Even simple games you can play on your phone can be good brain exercise, as well as making you use pattern recognition, logic and language skills. Games can help coordination, memory, and dexterity, and you can also learn a lot about good storytelling and how people are motivated by studying the actual design of the games you play and why you like them.

Gaming Can Be Socially Important

Not all gamers play multiplayer games, but most gamers do to some degree engage with other players, by talking about the games they like and interacting on things like forums, social media, and of course with their friends in real life! Gaming creates social opportunities and friendships as much as any other hobby or interest, and this can be an important part of some people’s lives.

As you can see, there is more to gaming than wasting time and it can be something that can really enrich your free time.

Big Games Returning for the Holiday Season

2017 was a great year for gamers thanks to the long list of amazing games released throughout the year. Yet the year is not over, and there are still pretty big titles in store for us, ready to be released in time for the winter holiday shopping rush. If mobile casino play is not the only thing you do for fun, you will likely be glad to see what great games this year still has in store for your gaming pleasure.

Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus

The Wolfenstein franchise is probably the one with the most reboots in its history. And the latest iteration of the story, taking players into a Nazi-ruled 1960, was the most beautifully built of them all – and the richest when it comes to story and character details. No wonder Bethesda decided to take the story further. But this time, everyone’s favorite American operative, William John “B. J.” Blazkowitz will have a tough job: helping the Resistance start the New American Revolution and get rid of the Nazi rule once and for all.

The game, set to be released on October 27, takes its players to the America of the 1960s overrun by Nazi forces. The retro environment of the game will be mixed with the retro-futuristic look of the devices and weapons used, giving the game its signature atmosphere.

Assassin’s Creed Origins

For years, players have been fighting the fight buried inside the genetic memory of the game’s protagonist, brought to light by the mysterious Animus device. This time, the story goes back further than ever before, exploring the origin of the conflict between the Templars and the Assassins. In the game, players will control a Medjay called Bayek, living in the Ptolemaic period of Egypt, constantly on the brink of being invaded by Romans. During the game, he will come in contact with forces manipulating the events from the shadow, and ultimately become the first Assassin.

The game is set to be released on October 27.

Call of Duty WW2

Still exploring history – but this time the real one instead of an alternative. Call of Duty returns to its World War II roots with its latest edition, taking players into the war-ridden Europe between 1944 and 1945. Players will join a squad of 12 men in the 1st Infantry Division and will be taken across the Nazi-occupied France and Belgium, right into the heart of Germany. The game will have several actionable characters and will cover several real campaigns that took place in the area at the time. And it will also come with a “Zombies” storyline involving secret experiments, occult forces, and the living dead.

Expect the game to be released on November 3.

Need for Speed Payback

Two years have passed since the last Need for Speed game saw the light of day. The time has come for “Payback”, another story-driven take on the racing franchise. The game will take players into Fortune Valley, and will follow three characters, Tyler Morgan (The Racer), Mac (The Showman) and Jess (The Wheelman) in their attempts to take down a cartel that controls the area’s underworld. All this with a lot of action driving, of course.

The game is set to be released on November 10.

Star Wars Battlefront II

Another action shooter set in the Star Wars universe. This time, the game will have not only a massive multiplayer world but a story-driven single-player campaign, too. In it, players will take on the role of Iden Versio, leader of an Imperial Special Forces team known as the Inferno Squad, and the story will lead up to the events of “The Force Awakens”. The game will have segments where players will be able to control characters like Kylo Ren and Luke Skywalker.

Release date: November 17.

How MOBAs Are Luring Hardcore PC and Console Gamers Into the Mobile Gaming Sphere

There has long been the perception that mobile games are just not as good or as ‘serious’ as the games we play on consoles and PCs. Perhaps it is because of all those social media games like Farmville, or the ‘4 Pictures, 1 Word’ style puzzle games your aunts like to play, but mobile gaming has a really bad rap among hardcore gamers.  However, there are a few genres in the mobile gaming market that have helped more established gamers begin to enjoy the mobile platforms and look forward to their ‘dead time’ out and about, for instance commuting, so they get some free time to play them. Of these, MOBAs (multiplayer online battle arenas) are probably the most popular.

Here are some of the qualities a good MOBA, like Arena of Valor, a popular game you can find out about at https://mobilegamerhub.com/arena-of-valor/, have included to make serious gamers pay attention:

Rich Character Builds

MOBAs are not unique to mobile devices, and have been played on PCs online for years. They are now becoming a big deal on mobile, partly because the technology is starting to allow equally fun and interesting gameplay, even with the unusual control systems that have to be created for touch screen devices. However, one of the most appealing things about this style of game has always been the diversity and richness of the character builds a player can create. Choosing from interesting classes that have a role in a group or are well equipped for one on one combat is interesting and fun, and allows players to build up their roster of playable characters much as they would in PC or console games of this nature.

Great Social Features

When you play on console or PC, you do of course have chat options within the game you are playing if you are enjoying an online gaming experience. However, these do tend to be even better on mobile games, as they are built around being used on communication devices. Whether you play mainly with people you know or strangers the games match you to, communication and social features tend to be exceptional on the big name mobile MOBAs.

Good Bragging Rights

Almost anything you can play online has visible achievements and stats, and league tables you can use to see how you compare to other players. However, this is also an area where mobile gaming really excels, due to the large community and the ease of incorporating things like gamer stats and worldwide performance tables into your interface. If you enjoy playing for glory or to beat other players, it is rarely more satisfying than on mobile MOBA style games.

While mobile gaming is a long way off of being able to replace PC or console gaming in the hearts of serious gamers, games like MOBAs have really made it a lot more enticing, and perhaps won a lot of us over when we aren’t at home.

Footballer Wants To Change Name To Show His Love of WoW

Chris Kluwe

A punter for the American Football Team Minnesota Vikings says that he loves playing World of Warcraft so much that he’s tossed around the idea of changing his name. His name (for today at least) is Chris Kluwe, his teammates know of his love of WoW and they’ve already given him an appropriate nickname but he is considering taking that name to the next level.

Here’s his discussion of the topic on his weekly radio program (original article from Star Tribune):

“I think more people like to hear me talk about playing video games than football,” said Kluwe, an expert at many video games. “I’ve played video games since I was 4 years old. I play them a lot more than I kick a football. I kick the ball about 45 minutes a day. I play video games about five or six hours a day. But that’s OK. I don’t watch TV.”

“Back when [Bengals receiver] Chad Johnson changed his name to Ocho Cinco, I told the guys at 93X that I was going to change my name to Chris ‘World of Warcraft,’ ” Kluwe said. “They said that’s too long. So they started calling me Chris ‘Warcraft.’ I could make a lot of money if I changed my name to that.”

He’s doing pretty well for himself. He recently renegotiated his contract for $8.3 million over the next 5 seasons.

According to his wikipedia page, he plays a troll rogue on the Kil’jaeden sever, keep an eye out for him. It’s unknown whether he plays a female or male char 🙂

 

[via Gaming Angels]

The Coolest Blocks Around.

I doubt that Alexey Pajitnov had any idea in 1985 that when he designed Tetris, it would be one of the most popular games in video gaming history.  Here we are 23 years later, and you can find it on every popular computer type, gaming console, handhelds, cell phones and PDA’s.  And being so wildly popular, there is bound to be fan designed products dedicated to the game, such as tshirts, mousemats, stickers, etc.  But I have to say, the wildest, and dare I say “Coolest” product I’ve seen dedicated to Tetris, is the ICEBLOX.

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Now you can chill out with your favorite drink and play Tetris like one cool customer!

Hemp-Mote Smokes The Competition.

Dhreck, a dedicated modder went ahead and made a Wiimote and Nunchuck shell entirely out of hemp. Why would he do this? I believe the operative question is “why not?” And yes, it is an actual Wiimote under there, it’s not just some hemp mockup. It is fully functional, and ready to use in game play.

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The Hemp-Mote is absolutely playable, all buttons, accelerometers and the infrared camera accounted for. Unfortunately its exterior is also quite fragile and prone to degeneration, being in the raw state that it is.


Using saws and files I removed most of the hard plastic shells, then rebuild the underlying shapes using modeling putty. After Smoothing the result out with fine grained sandpaper I give the whole a quick black paint job to ensure eventual gaps didn’t stand out too much. Ta-daa!, a base to wrap stuff around.

It continues to amaze me the lengths some people will go to to enhance their personal game play.  I’ve sanded a few edges here and there and shortened or lengthened cables, but this level of modding takes the virtual cake !  That being said, I want one!

Who Ya Gonna Call?

Back in the day, the Ghostbuster movies were teh bombage!  I’m glad to finally see Atari Run with a newer version of this namesake with a fresh approach and using the latest in video and programming technology to produce it.  This is a definate must buy for me next June!

Check this awesome HD trailer:

Besides….who would pass up a chance to drive the Ecto-1, arguably one of the most famous vehicles in movie history 😉

Who Wants Some??

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Yeah you heard it.  The Duke is back, and even more crude, and anti-alien as ever.  Full of the famous one-liners everyone’s come to love and repeat, “Duke Nukem: Forever” seems to have made the unlikely transition from vaporware to reality.  3DRealms.Com released this new trailer for the game that been on the development shelf for ten long years. A bit disappointing because it doesn’t show any gameplay!  However, those who can remember back to the days of old….*grin*  Here’s a recap of the DN:F video 3DRealms released back in 1998 that previews some gameplay and cutscenes.

duke

I’ve been waiting a loooooong time for this title.  A while back, I gave up the ghost, and surrendered it to the vaporware category.  Oh Duke – Why do you tease me so?!?  Don’t let me down again 😉  In the immortal words of the Duke himself – “It’s time to kick ass and chew bubble gum. And I’m all out of gum.”

GeekNews Minicity

Here’s a cute little web browser based “game” that lets you create a city sort of like SimCity.  There’s nothing to do, it’s all automatic, and is completely based on original hits from individual IP addresses.  The more people that visit the city, the more it expands in detail.  On the website it shows what pages to visit in order to increase different factors of the city.

geekcity

Of all the watches, the rolex watches as well as fossil watches have been the most popular of mens watches, also because they are known as the super tsunami watch duo.

So – go visit GeekNews City and let the population explosion begin!

Retro Game Of The Day

Pac-Man, the quintessential retro arcade game. Originally created by Namco in the early 1980s and has now been updated for the web by Neave.  I can’t tell you how many hours I lost in this game 🙂   Now here’s a chance to have a lot more fun in this web adaptation of an 80’s classic.

                             

Use your arrow keys to move the Pac-Man. Press “M” to Mute/Un-mute sound, “P” to Pause/Un-pause the game, and “Q” to quit at any time.

Have a ton of fun!