Bloodborne Is Fun BECAUSE It’s Hard—And Here’s Why!

PS4 Exclusive Bloodborne

I’m not the kind of player who longs for “the good old days” when games seemed to hate you and want you to die. My attempt to replay Paperboy and recapture the glory of my NES days was short-lived as I realized how needlessly, unrewardingly cruel that game is—I just didn’t know any better as a kid. 

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1956 Hits

When Great Games Go Wrong: Bad Moments in Good Games

Metal Gear Solid - GamePlay Mechanics

In another article, I discuss awesome moments or levels in otherwise mediocre (or merely good) games. Here, I’ll consider the other side of the coin: good or great games dragged down by terrible moments or terrible design decisions. 

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835 Hits

Diamonds in the Rough: Awesome Parts of Awful of Games

The Good Parts of a Bad Video Game.

I played Thief this month when I got it free for PS3 from PlayStation Plus. Thief is not a great game. It’s mostly a pretty mediocre game, especially if you’ve played the far superior Dishonored.

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925 Hits

Is Gaming A Waste of Time, Or a Great Way to Spend Our Time?

Gamification

Over the past couple of months, I sunk over 120 hours into a playthrough of Dragon Age: Inquisition. That comes out to an average of 2-3 hours a day. I’m a married man with graduate degrees and a lot of things to do, but for the last couple of months, most of my free time went into fighting dragons in Thedas in a single-player game (I only spent a few hours in DA:I’s multiplayer mode).

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583 Hits

You Ain’t Seen Nothin Yet: Game-Changing Post-Credits Scenes

Post Credit Video Game Scenes

In another article, I discuss post-credits scenes played for comedy or as cliffhangers—scenes that don’t massively change the game you’ve played. This article is about games that save such a shock for after the credits that you can’t fairly say that a player who doesn’t see it knows how the game ends. 

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829 Hits

Post Credit Video Game Scenes - Are They Worth Watching???

video game end credits

Whether it's the influence of the recent Avengers series of Marvel movies or just that video game storytelling is continuing to develop, post-credits scenes seem to be getting more and more common in games these days. The tradition of hiding some sort of Easter egg after the credits has been around in movies at least since the post-credits tagline “James Bond will return . . . “ was first used in 1963’s From Russia With Love (though post-credit scenes weren’t popularized until 1979’s The Muppet Movie). 

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More & More Indie Games are coming out with Retro Graphics

Indie Games and Retro Graphics

In a recent article, I discuss different kinds of retro games being made today—those with a major contemporary twist and those that expand and deepen what the old games did.  Our case study will be To The Moon which was released back in 2011’s.

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1073 Hits

Recipe for then Best Selling Video Games of all Time - Part 2

Selling Video Games of all Time

In part 1 of this article, I discussed the outlier all-time bestsellers, games that stand alone in making the bestseller list by doing something unique: 

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632 Hits

Recipe for Creating the Best Selling Video Games of All Time

Best Selling Video Games off all time

Video games are one of the most important cultural developments of our time. The early 20th century had film, radio, and TV. The late 20th and early 21st centuries have the internet, computers, and video games.

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Exciting Remakes and Reboots for PS4 & More

Playstation Experience

A new King’s Quest? Remastered Day of the Tentacle joining Grim Fandango as LucasArts games I can finally play again? And…an UNupdated Final Fantasy VII on PS4? One of these things is not like the other.

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1180 Hits

Metroid and The Last of Us - Has a strong Bond!

The Last of Us and Metroid NES

Spoiler warning: This post contains spoilers for The Last of Us (little ones), the Left Behind DLC for The Last of Us (big ones), and, well, 1987’s Metroid.

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544 Hits

Shh! The Message Behind Gaming as a Male or Female Character

Mass Effect Trilogy

A lot of role-playing games (RPGs) new and old let you pick the sex of your character (male or female) before you start. Which is awesome. I’ve played Mass Effect with both Maleshep and Femshep characters and got two games’ worth of quality voice acting for the price of one. 

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2298 Hits

Borderlands STORY Is Good Enough and That’s All It Has to Be

GamePlay with Borderlands

Spoiler note: This post contains plot spoilers about Borderlands and Borderlands 2 and, by default, spoilers about the characters in the upcoming Pre-Sequel who also appear in Borderlands 2. Spoiling Borderlands 1 for you might actually be doing you a favor, though. That ending’s terrible.

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2243 Hits

Social Sim: Check. Dungeon-Crawler: Check. Persona Does It All Both Absurdly and Well

shin megami tensei Persona Games            One of the most pleasant surprises of the end of the PS2’s life cycle were Atlus’s Persona 3 (2007) and Persona 4 (2008), both released in North America long after the next generation of consoles had come out.

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2584 Hits

So what is it about the Borderlands, That's So Hard To Put Down?

I like RPGs. So yeah, I like Borderlands . But the Borderlands hybrid RPG-shooter formula (recently co-opted by Bungie’s Destiny , and taken in a very different direction by the Mass Effect series) is more than the sum of its parts. So what is it about the Borderlands combination of the shooter and RPG genres that makes the games so hard to put down? The main addicting force of Borderlands is its progression systems. Borderlands had ‘em, Borderlands 2 greatly expanded on them (as on practically every other element of the formula). In B2 , for instance, you have the leveling system. Then you have the skill points system built on top of that (with the constant ability to respec your skill trees back at your base in Sanctuary). Then you have the kajillion different challenges, in-game achievements based on using weapons, powers, and effects in certain ways, killing various enemies,...
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742 Hits

Why I love gaming with Board Games

Board Games and GamePlay

            A few weeks ago, E. Ortiz wrote an interesting article over at Big Blue Die (Which is no longer Live) is about why board games aren’t going to be killed off by video games, noting the emphasis on in-room socialization and tactile engagement with the game.

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836 Hits

The Good, Bad and the Ugly with TellTale Games

The Wolf Among Us

Spoiler Alert: This post contains spoilers about The Wolf Among Us and Season Two of The Walking Dead by Telltale Games (and implied spoilers about Season One).

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751 Hits

A Special Story from Season One Telltale’s The Walking Dead

Telltale Games

Spoiler Alert: This post contains spoilers about Season One of Telltale’s The Walking Dead.

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Does Interconnected Game Play Work / And How So

Games and interconnection

 In the last couple of years, interconnected games in which player actions in one game affect options or situations in another have started to pop up more frequently than usual.

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664 Hits

Rarer than Unicorns: Escort Missions That Deserve Saving

The Last of Us

As I discuss in a related post [here], escort missions are usually terrible, bringing otherwise fun games to a screeching halt with shoddy mechanics, annoying characters, and terrible AI.

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1314 Hits