Tag: Video Games News

Viewpoint – Greed rules in video games, not innovation

Posted on April 18, 2018  in Video Games

By Micheal Foster-Sanders/campus editor

I remember when I received my Nintendo Entertainment System as a birthday gift. I was familiar with video games and played them because my older cousins had systems like the Atari 2600, ColecoVision and Mattel’s Intellivision. But when I first saw Super Mario Bros. flash across my TV screen and watched Mario hit that first block, I knew immediately this was something different from the typical bleeps and graphics I was familiar with.

Fast forward 32 years later, and I haven’t felt that experience in quite some time now.

Each leap in the new generation of gaming brought new experiences along with new visuals. Sonic the Hedgehog zipped through levels, Samus waged war against the Metroids, and the Streets of Rage squad fought against a legion of henchmen to reach Mr. X during the 16-bit era. Sony unseated Nintendo during the 32/64-bit wars with games like Parappa the Rapper, Intelligent Cube and Resident Evil 2.

Then came Sega’s swan song with the Dreamcast, firing the first shot in that era of gaming and giving gamers a version of a game that was better than its arcade counterpart, Soul Calibur.

Games today lack the soul and passion of those from yesteryear. Mindless rehashes of games that lack innovation show that companies are just playing it safe just to get a check. 

Almost every game has a forced multiplayer edition when it’s not needed, and single-player games are suffering from it.

Companies like Capcom, once considered one of the gods of video game content, dumbed down Street Fighter V for casual fans and created a game that relies on luck instead of skill.

I can’t blame the developers. Gamers don’t support them when they take risks. Instead, gamers usually complain.

Thank God for the developers out there who are not afraid of taking risks and bringing out games like Nier: Automata, A Way Out, Max Payne 3, and the God of War series, which Sony reinvented for its fourth installment.

I still have hope for games wowing and giving me the special feeling that I had growing up.

But as long as the gamers refuse to demand innovation and refuse to support developers when they innovate, we’re looking at dark days ahead. 

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Tag: Video Games News

A New Esports Arena Brings the World of Competitive Video Games to Oakland

Posted on April 18, 2018  in Video Games

click to enlarge

PHOTO COURTESY OF ESPORTS ARENA

  • Photo courtesy of Esports Arena

The competitive video game scene is on fire right now. Originally powered by the growth of Twitch.tv, a popular site where viewers can watch gamers play live, the market for esports has become a busy place over the past five years. Popular games like League of Legends and Dota 2 offer million-dollar prizes to the best teams in the world, while even on more local levels, weekly tournaments are a standard in the Bay Area.

It’s no surprise, then, that an Esports Arena would find its way to the Bay Area’s gaming scene. What is surprising is that the worldwide company behind Esports Arena chose Oakland as the place to build its newest American game gym.

Tyler Endres, CEO of Esports Arena, likens the facilities to a gym in that local big shots can come to one central place to find the best competition. This is why he and some friends became interested in esports as a business to begin with: They couldn’t find good enough players to test their skills against in their local scene in Santa Ana, Calif.

Endres said that Oakland was chosen because “Santa Ana is a more urban downtown in Orange County, and I really dug that same vibe in Oakland. I looked at San Francisco initially and saw that the prices were insane, and to be honest I don’t think that’s my crowd. I don’t know how many video gamers live in the city. The more I came up here, the more I liked this area.”

Endres said that the Oakland facility will open in May, though an exact opening date is not yet set. The Oakland Esports Arena did have a soft opening in April, however, when it played host to the NOODS NOODS NOODS festival, sponsored by Cup of Noodle.

Despite oodles of online games and virtual venues to play those games, there are still plenty of games that players want to play face-to-face. Some of those games are even older than a few of the attendees at the Arena.

While new games like Fortnite Battle Royale and Overwatch do draw in the fans, Super Smash Bros. has a vibrant scene in the Bay Area as well. Specifically, there is a wider group of players dedicated to Super Smash Bros. Melee, a version of this Nintendo fighting game built for the now ancient GameCube console.

While other games offer weekly patches, updates, and balance changes to ensure they’re always fair, Super Smash Bros. Melee was released in 2001, has never been updated, and is widely considered to be extremely imbalanced: Some characters are decidedly more powerful than others. This graph of character balance has swung around wildly in the course of the game’s 17-year history, however, making the game extremely distinct in a world where most hard-core gamers feel that they’ve already discovered every secret nook and skill in most games.

At the top of the Smash Melee pile is Justin McGrath, aka Plup. Plup took the top prize at Genesis 5 in January, an Oakland-based Smash tournament that drew thousands of viewers worldwide, and many visitors to Oakland. Plup has also taken tournaments at the Museum of Art and Digital Entertainment, the Oakland video game museum that hosts Melee tournaments most Friday nights.

But in a nod to exactly what Endres’ goals were with the Esports Arena, Plup took second place in the Noods, Noods, Noods tournament, showing just how steep the competition can get when the draw of the arena is present.

That draw is a worldwide phenomenon, said Allied Esports CEO Jud Hannigan. Hannigan runs the worldwide parent company behind Esports Arena, which is its North American arm. The parent firm runs arenas in the European Union and China as well, and it is in China where the future of the industry seems to be unfolding at a fast pace.

“In China, the numbers are staggering,” said Hannigan. “That’s just the nature of the beast in China. If you look at where we are putting a lot of time and energy and growth, that’s North America. We feel there is a great opportunity to build out a market for esports.”

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Gamers at the new Esports Arena competed at an event on Apr. 7 sponsored by Cup of Noodles. - PHOTO COURTESY OF ESPORTS ARENA

  • Photo courtesy of Esports Arena

  • Gamers at the new Esports Arena competed at an event on Apr. 7 sponsored by Cup of Noodles.


In China, the games are different from the rest of the world, said Hannigan, as is proved by the extreme popularity of mobile game Arena of Valor, which is the most popular in Chinese Esports Arenas. The game currently boasts 100 million daily active users.

With numbers like that, it’s just a matter of time until the United States gets on board with the gymnasium model for esports. Esports Arena is hoping to draw in customers with a $25 per month fee to access the space and its multitude of systems, screens, and games.

“As esports continues to evolve and grow, what we’re doing at Allied will continue to evolve. We feel we’re closely aligned to the need in the industry for what we’re building. Looking at our growth is a testament to the industry’s growth. We’re game agnostic,” said Hannigan.

From the looks of the attendance at the NOODS NOODS NOODS festival, it’s a safe bet the gamers in the East Bay will be happy to help fuel that growth.

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Tag: Video Games News

From Florence to God of War | The best video games of 2018 (so far)

Posted on April 18, 2018  in Video Games

Even before most of us  have had time to sample 2017’s bumper crop of gaming gems, including some of the finest ever made, the new year has started with some stunning video games of its own. From thrilling hunts of giant beasts to a touching tale of young love, 2018 has already opened an impressive and eclectic gaming library.

Long may it continue. But to get you started, here are our favourite video games of 2018 so far. With many more to come.

Iconoclasts

Platforms  PS4, PC, Vita Developer Konjak

What is it? Retro-themed 2D puzzle-platformer that has you travelling a religiously-ruled technological dystopia as young mechanic Robin.

Why we love it Pretty as its Mega Drive styling is, Iconoclasts proves itself as more than simply another cartoonish retro retread with its smart balance between twitch shooting and cerebral puzzling. While the teasers scattered throughout are smart enough in their own right, the battles against screen-filling robotic menaces have their own quirks as you locate, and exploit, each enemy’s weakness.

Subnautica

Platform  PC Developer Unknown Worlds Entertainment

What is it? Tense and challenging survival game that has you staving off hunger, thirst and man-eating aquatic beasts on a mysterious ocean planet.

Why we love itSubnautica takes many of the Minecraft-inspired survival traits and makes it its own. Its ocean planet is a gorgeous, terrifying environment to explore; the twisted, creature-infested caves tempting you with fresh resources to take back to base. It is underwater adventuring done right, asking you to balance your safety and oxygen level with your own curiosity. And if that kind of thing sounds a bit stressful, Subnautica also provides more relaxed creative modes to allow you to splash around at your own pace.

 

Monster Hunter World 

Platforms  PS4, Xbox One Developer Capcom

What is it? The spectacular return of Capcom’s giant beast slaying RPG.

Why we love it Much has been made of Monster Hunter World’s play for the mainstream; with its thrilling action and giant weaponry opened up beyond its sizable cult following. But while this is a notably more accessible expedition for new hunters, you will still find a complex, wonderfully eccentric and endlessly entertaining adventure. Finally downing a towering beast after an epic battle across World’s gorgeous environments is one of gaming’s most satisfying feats.

Full review

Shadow of the Colossus

Platform  PS4 Developer Sony/Bluepoint Games

What is it? Beautiful remaster of Team Ico’s seminal 2005 adventure that has you roaming a forbidden land in order to slay 13 enormous colossi.

Why we love it Shadow of the Colossus remains one of the finest games ever made; the haunting melancholy that tinges the thrilling battles against impossibly huge creatures remaining as potent as it did more than a decade ago. It’s a fabulous game with a fierce challenge, but asks crushing questions about love, motivation, sacrifice and cruelty. And the PS4 upgrade is simply stunning, with improved camera, controls and technical oomph bringing the game’s artistic vision to life.

Full review

Celeste

Platform  PS4, Xbox One, Switch, PC Developer Matt Makes Games

What is it? Terrifically tough twitch platformer from the creator of Towerfall that has you guiding young Madeline up a hostile mountain and through her own inner turmoil.

Why we love it Its pixel-perfect platforming is deeply satisfying and fiercely challenging, scratching a similar itch to Super Meat Boy and their ilk. And the collectible strawberries scattered throughout will become your new obsession. Celeste also ties this to an effective and compelling tale of Madeline’s struggle as she faces depression and panic attacks during her ascent.

Platforms  PS4, Xbox One Developer Arc System Works

What is it? Classic one on one fighting action based on the long-running and hugely popular manga series.

Why we love it While the core of Dragon Ball FighterZ will be familiar, it layers on its own quirks and personality to keep fighting fresh. The dedication to Dragon Ball lore throws up some fascinating, match-swinging mechanics and a supremely varied roster. Its terrific stuff and more accessible than many fighting games, keeping its inputs and special moves easy to learn. Gorgeous too.

Descenders

Platform  PC Developer RageSquid

What is it? Blistering downhill mountain-biking that takes its cues from games like Skate and SSX.

Why we love it Its breakneck biking, flips and chicanery might recall something like Trials, but Descenders earns its stripes with its gorgeous procedurally generated courses. Each descent is different, throwing up ramps and turns that rely on twitch reaction and mastery of mechanics rather than learning each level. It does mean it can be punishing and frustrating, too, but that challenge can add to the satisfaction of nailing a run.

Bayonetta 1 and 2

Platform  Switch Developer Platinum Games

What is it?Switch upgrade to two of the most brilliant, and bonkers, action games ever made.

Why we love it Following the announcement of Bayonetta 3, it is the perfect time to reacquaint ourselves with the salacious Umbra Witch. Bayonetta is the hero who summons screen-filling demons with her hair (which is also her clothes) so she can punch Gods into the sun. Both games are a constant cacophony of colourful chaos, but the peerless combat mechanics allow you to slip into a zen-like ballet; flipping and weaving between attacks while the flurry of weaponry on both hands and feet turn angels into kibble. If that doesn’t appeal, well, I don’t know what else to tell you.

Florence

Platform  iOS, Android Developer Mountains

What is it? Wonderful interactive comic book about modern love from the creator of Monument Valley.

Why we love it This sweet and fleeting tale of millennial life brilliantly tells of the thrill, exploration and sacrifice of a burgeoning relationship. While your interaction is relatively limited as its wordless yarn unfolds, your gentle swipes abstractly capture thoughts and feeling. It’s beautifully presented, smart and wonderfully uplifting without being saccharine.

Moss

PlatformPS4 (PSVR) Developer Polyarc

What is it? Brilliant virtual reality storybook puzzler in which you guide young mouse Quill from on high, interacting with the environment to help her on her way through a dreamy fantasy land.

Why we love it Virtual reality is yet to truly find its rhythm for outstanding gaming experiences, but Moss is one of the best reasons to believe it can. Developer Polyarc understands how to use VR’s qualities to transport you into Moss’s storybook dioramas, providing involving challenges and a charming, effecting story that has you genuinely caring for your tiny mouse charge.

Warhammer: Vermintide II

PlatformPC Developer Fatshark

What is it? First-person-action game based in the Warhammer fantasy universe in which a team of four hunters must co-operate to fight off waves of ratmen from the Chaos Army.

Why we love it Vermintide is not shy of taking its inspiration from Left 4 Dead, swapping out zombies for the ratty Skaven. But this sequel understands how to leverage that compelling loop of breathless survival and combine it with the medieval fantasy of the Warhammer universe. Fifteen ‘careers’ across five different classes offer up a plethora of choice in weapons and powers, while the combat is meaty, violent and endlessly satisfying.

Flinthook

PlatformsPS4, Xbox One, Switch, PC Developer Tribute Games

What is it? Retro-styled rogue-like shoot ’em up that has a grapple-equipped hero taking down baddies in labyrinthine airships.

Why we love it Flinthook has a brilliant sense of movement and inertia, your diminutive bounty hunter flinging himself across bullet-pocked stages, slowing time and blasting bad guys. It feels great to play and is tremendously challenging, as you must carry damage over from ship to ship. If you die before hunting out your target? Back to the beginning. But a smart upgrade system gives a sense of progression, tapping into a compelling one-more-go loop.

Sea of Thieves

PlatformsXbox One, PC Developer Rare Studios

What is it? It be a Rare blend of of high-seas hijinks and shared-world swashbuckling and you set sail into pirate infested waters, exploring the world and hunting out treasure. Arr.

Why we love it Sea of Thieves is a hilarious sandbox game, giving players the tools to get up to all sorts of pirate hijinks while sailing out on the seas. There is no real objective or story. Instead, you progress by collecting and completing quests. Some questions over its longevity abound, but Rare have created a gorgeous, charming world that has plenty to offer.

Full review

Far Cry 5

PlatformsPS4, Xbox One, PC Developer Ubisoft

What is it? It’s chaos in America as you are flown into the war-torn Hope County to fight off the religious zealots that are terrorising the district.

Why we love it While Far Cry 5 may fall short on its narrative potential, its setup crackles with tension and violence. Hope is a glorious tinderbox, ready to flare into gunfire and chaos at any time. As is Far Cry’s calling card, it is a meaty shooter with a fine line in improv. It might not be the tightest action game out there, but few can match its explosive unpredictability.

Full review

Minit

PlatformsPS4, Xbox One, PC Developer JW, Kitty, Jukio, and Dom

What is it? Peculiarly charming lo-fi adventure that has you exploring a fantasy land to uncover a series of mysteries. The catch? You will die every 60 seconds.

Why we love it Inspired by the more elaborate time-loops of The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask, Minit is a clever and intriguing little adventure. You will explore the world, 60 seconds at a time, learning the environment and trying to uncover items that will further your quest. Following your inevitable death, you will keep any items, opening up the world a minute at a time.

Yakuza 6: Song of Life

PlatformsPS4 Developer Sega

What is it? The final chapter in the story of one of gaming’s finest characters, Kazuma Kiryu, as he returns to the Tokyo district of Kamurocho after three years in prison to search for his missing foster daughter.

Why we love it Yakuza keeps up its strong tradition of crunchy brawling, barmy character and brilliant world-building. Few games mix the wacky and profound in quite the way Yakuza does, a series steeped in Japanese culture, and Yakuza 6 is as fine a send-off for the Dragon of Dojima as you could hope for.

God of War

PlatformsPS4 Developer Sony Santa Monica

What is it? Fatherly reinvention of gaming’s angriest man as Kratos moves to the Norse mountains in an attempt to escape his past and raise his young son, Atreus. Ends up smacking trolls with a bloody great axe, obviously.

Why we love it Salvation for the seemingly irredeemable Kratos isn’t an easy task, nor is breathing fresh life into an action series that had begun to lose its lustre. God of War achieves both in sensational fashion. The furious combat and gorgeous exploration is the best it has ever been, opening up the land of Midgard for the biggest God of War yet. But in tandem with that is an effecting and deftly-told story, with the relationship between Kratos and Atreus forming its beating heart. Its greatest achievement is humanising Kratos without shying away from his violent past. And also that you can lob your magic axe at an ogre and have it return like a boomerang with a hardy thump and explosion of ice.

Full review

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D&D co-creator Gary Gygax’s trust and Fig partner on video games

Posted on April 18, 2018  in Video Games

Video games owe a great deal to Gary Gygax, the co-creator of Dungeons & Dragons. In many ways, his game set foundations for the medium, and its mechanics and spirit branch out to all genres these days. But Gygax never created a video game that made it to market.

Alex Gygax wants to add video game development to his father’s legacy. Today, The Gygax Trust is announcing a partnership with the crowdfunding platform Fig to publish video games based on the unpublished works of Gary Gygax. Timing for the first campaign was not disclosed.

In an interview with GamesBeat, Paul Stormberg of Gygax Games said that the projects would deal with, among other things, the original home role-playing game campaign that Gygax ran. “We’ll just say it’s something people have been waiting for a long time,” said Stormberg, who’s worked for years in the pen-and-paper RPG industry.

Alex Gygax said that the trust picked Fig as a partner because of the important role fans play in crowdfunding. Since they don’t have a development studio signed or a game prototype yet, they chose Fig to work with. This platform differs from Kickstarter and Indiegogo in that people backing products can get a piece of the action and a return on their pledges.

“It’s a good opportunity to get some games produced and work with gamers and still be able to have some direction of where some things go,” Alex said, “making sure the spirit, the essence, of Dungeons & Dragons and the RPG Realm is kept in mind.”

I asked if it was at all based on Castle Greyhawk, the megadungeon that served as the base for one of Gary Gygax’s home campaigns. They were a bit coy about it, but they did confirm that the projects wouldn’t involve Gord the Rogue, his character that appeared in novels after the D&D co-creators breakup with his own company, TSR, or the Castle Zagyg, a Castles & Crusades megadungeon that could be called “The Son of Castle Greyhawk.”

“We’ll just saw it’s something people have been waiting for a long time,” Stromberg said.

The Gygax Trust has had years to adapt Gary Gygax’s works into a game. So, why did they decide now is the time? It’s a combination of platforms like Fig and the advancement of in-game design and computer tech.

“Video games have caught up” with the ideas and concepts my father played with, Alex Gygax said. “I think [the industry] has caught up with what we’re trying to create.”

Stromberg explained how over the years, the family has tried to work with studios to make games on Gary Gygax’s works before.

“Gail [Gygax, Gary’s wife] herself is quite familiar with the development of her husband’s IP for computer games, having worked with a number of companies over the years to do so. While the projects all had promise, some of them quite fantastic, the developers could never quite achieve the vision Gary had laid out,” Stromberg said. “However, now, with Fig, an amazing pool of talented developers, and some truly amazing advances in computer gaming, we know we can begin to bring the real jewels of Gary’s unpublished IP to his legions of fans and the larger gaming community.”

As we chatted, Alex Gygax and Stromberg kept talking about the fans. It’s certainly the people who play, who create adventures and worlds of their own, that have been the key to D&D‘s longevity over the past 40 years. Poking around internet communities such as Reddit and forums devoted to RPGs, you find people still playing the old editions that Gary Gygax published decades ago.

“[My father’s work] is something people love, and they stick with it. It had a very family like feeling to it, to everyone that has played or enjoyed it over the years,” Alex Gygax said.

On Reddit and those forums, you’ll also find people recounting their fond memories of encounters with Gary Gygax, who always made it a point to interact with fans at conventions and answer thousands of letters and emails. Alex Gygax even noted how his father would answer letters from prisoners.

And it’s that passion and goodwill that Fig and the Gygax Trust are hoping to tap for their crowdfunding campaign.



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Tag: Video Games News

V&A Museum: Video games are approaching a cultural tipping point

Posted on April 18, 2018  in Video Games

The wider world seems to have tunnel vision when it comes to video games, particularly when compared to other forms of entertainment.

When it comes to film, people are often just as aware of the acclaimed, smaller dramas as they are the big, noisy blockbusters like Marvel and Star Wars. And there is plenty of awareness around the world of literature, with your average person on the street able to name both historical classics and more recent bestsellers.

But unless they partake in the hobby itself, there is still a remarkably significant proportion of the populous that believe video games are defined by just Call of Duty, FIFA and Grand Theft Auto – plus family friendly stuff like Mario and Pokmon. There is far less awareness of celebrated independent titles, even BAFTA winners What Remains of Edith Finch and Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice.

marie_good

Marie Foulston, V&A

It’s a frustrating state of affairs for anyone in the industry, but it is one that Marie Foulston, curator at London’s famous V&A museum, believes is coming to an end.

“That literacy, knowledge and respect of the full range of games is something [we’re gaining],” she tells GamesIndustry.biz. “I think we’re at the tipping point, where it’s beginning to happen.

“A game like Journey – yes, it’s a smaller, independent title and not as big as some of the blockbusters – but people are beginning to understand the appeal of titles like this. When you look at the work the British Library is undertaking, the Wellcome Trust, the Smithsonian, MOBA [Museum of Bad Art]… Through cultural spaces, that’s where we have the ability to show the broader range of games. Games communities and people that play games understand those and know how they work.”

Foulston and her colleague Kristian Volsing, research curator, are hoping to push this further with their newly announced exhibition, Videogames: Design/Play/Disrupt. Taking place at the V&A from September, this five-month initiative will showcase the work that goes into a wide variety of games, from AAA titles to indie sensations, as well as the cultures that develop around them.

Foulston tells us that while the larger titles featured, like Naughty Dog’s The Last of Us and Nintendo’s Splatoon, are likely to turn heads, the exhibition is also designed to raise awareness of those smaller games – “especially for audiences who aren’t as literate as those of us who are familiar with those titles.”

“Institutions such as museums can play an important part in educating people on what’s so amazing about games”

She continues: “We get to show them the full range of video games, that video games are more than perhaps what their expectations, stereotypes and perceptions are. Institutions such as museums can play an important part in communicating that and educating people on what’s so amazing about games and the true potential of this medium.”

This sentiment is perhaps typified by the Disrupt section, which explores how video games can participate in serious social and political debates. Examples include Molleindustria’s Phone Story, a satirical mobile title that explores the negative impact smartphone production has on the world and the third-world workers sourcing materials for their components, and How Do You Do It?, a 2014 indie game by Nina Freeman that explores the notion of sexuality through the eyes of an 11-year-old girl.

In her opening address at the exhibition’s announcement earlier this month, Foulston said there seem to be preconceived notions of what topics video games should and shouldn’t cover, but the V&A hopes to, “show how advanced and how nuanced the conversations have been within games communities, particularly among the people creating them.”

“People who aren’t familiar with games are probably only familiar with the same debates that still keep getting churned around – they don’t know there’s actually so much more going on,” she says. “There is so much complexity, so much discussion about what video games can be. That’s what we want to show people, to elevate those voices and provide a play for that.”

tlou

Showcasing design work from AAA blockbusters like The Last of Us can make the process of building a game seem more accessible to newcomers

However, she stresses that this is not about defining the remit of games – regardless of how broad we might deem that to be. Instead, the goal is to encourage attendees to make that definition themselves.

“This exhibition is not providing answers,” Foulston explains. “The aim to provoke conversation, provoke debate and discussion – and to do that, we’re showing works that have sparked debate and discussion. We’re showing people a range of those discussions and some of the opinions, so that people can come in, see that work and debate for themselves. It’s not for us to tell you what subjects games can and can’t cover, it’s for you to think about and to reflect on those moments.”

“There is so much complexity, so much discussion about what video games can be. That’s what we want to show people”

The access the V&A has secured for the exhibition is impressive. Not only have they managed to get design materials from various indies, but also gaming powerhouses such as Naughty Dog and Nintendo. In addition to videos of the final product, attendees can look forward to original character sketches and other forms of artwork.

The experience of gathering these materials has given Foulston a “newfound love and respect for those works” – although she is reluctant to pick a favourite exhibit.

Videogames: Design/Play/Disrupt is also interesting in that it focuses on a much more recent period. Past video games exhibitions, such as the Barbican’s Game On, have often concentrated on the history and evolution of the medium, dating right back to its origins in Pong. But the V&A is selecting pieces from the mid-2000s onwards – although Foulston warns that her team “can not and will not” showcase the entirety of games design from the past two decades.

“This is not a canon,” she says. “This is not everything, but we hope this is the beginning of other exhibitions, both in the V&A and elsewhere, that take on this subject, that look at different studios and their methods. We’re hoping it forms the foundations of a new curatorial language for video games and the way they can be displayed.”

“It’s not for us to tell you what subjects games can and can’t cover, it’s for you to think about and to reflect on those moments”

She continues: “I think when we look back in future at the mid-2000s to the present day, not just at video games but across design as a whole, that there have been huge changes that have been radically impacted by technological catalysts like broadband, smartphones, social media. That has changed the way we live, and has quite immediately affected video game design in a visible way – and an amazing way sometimes.”

It’s not just about demonstrating the breadth of video games, but the breadth of their audience. More than two billion people play games, even though a significant portion of these – the Candy Crush and Clash of Clans players – probably don’t even consider themselves part of the hobby, despite pouring in as many hours as your hardcore enthusiast.

doit

An entire section of the exhibit is dedicated to titles that explore subjects many wouldn’t expect to be covered by video games, such as sexuality

As such, the V&A is determined to show as broad a range of games as possible. Alongside titles like The Last of Us and Splatoon are exhibits around the League of Legends World Championships, the Minecraft community trying to recreate Game of Thrones’ Westeros continent, and the arcade fans building their own cabinets.

“Video game players aren’t some homogenous audience that all love the same things,” says Foulston. “Everybody has their own specialisms in different areas and that’s what we wanted to represent with this exhibition.”

“Big AAA studios and their design processes can often look quite inpenetrable, so showing some of the design objects from within that process can break it down”

Placing video games so prominently in such a renowned institution can also only help to validate the industry, and potentially encourage those interested in art and design to pursue a career developing games. Was that a consideration for Foulston and Volsing as they curated this event?

“I’d love for this exhibition to inspire people to create,” she says. “There are a range of works that come from big AAA studios and their design processes can often look quite inpenetrable, so showing some of the design objects and artefacts from within that process can begin to break it down and make it understood.

“It’s also important that we have the work of these solo and independent artists, because it shows that people don’t necessarily have to aim that high. They can just create smaller, very personal works with no constraints about what subjects, areas or ways in which you want to create.

“It would be really fantastic if people came to this exhibition, saw that creation and then be able to see themselves within that.”

To that end, the V&A is also looking for a games designer, developer or artist to join the team in the institution’s new video games residency program, building on the work accomplished when Sophia George was game designer in residence.

“It’s amazing the legacy and the impact that had,” says Foulston. “To this day, when I introduce myself to people and say I work at the V&A and I work across video games, they’re like, ‘oh, you’re Sophia George’. So you can see the impact that had, and that was something we wanted to recreate. We wanted to build on the awesome work she had done, but also the other residencies that other people had undertaken here.

“We’re looking for an artist, designer or practitioner whose creative work will be inspired by and feed into the themes we cover in the exhibition. That person will almost be a living embodiment of everything the exhibition is looking into.”

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The 50 worst video games of all time, according to critics

Posted on April 18, 2018  in Video Games

Video games: They’re generally pretty good!

They can be fun, and smart, and beautiful, and challenging, and — sometimes — all of those at once.

And then sometimes, they can be none of those things at all. Sometimes, they’re real, real bad.

Ride to Hell: Retribution
“Ride to Hell: Retribution” is considered one of the worst games of the Xbox 360/PlayStation 3 era.

Deep Silver

Such is the case with the games you’ll find below — the worst 50 games of all time, ranked according to their respective Metacritic scores.

These aren’t the games we liked the least, or the games that told us we’d never amount to anything. Instead, what we’ve got here is something slightly more scientific: Reviews aggregation site Metacritic compiles all reviews of games, then it averages those scores into an overall average. This is the bottom 50 from that list (of over 15,000 games), with duplicates removed.

These 50 games are the absolute worst of the worst, according to critics:

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Tag: Video Games News

Tech: The 50 worst video games of all time, according to critics

Posted on April 18, 2018  in Video Games

Video games: They’re generally pretty good!

They can be fun, and smart, and beautiful, and challenging, and — sometimes — all of those at once.

And then sometimes, they can be none of those things at all. Sometimes, they’re real, real bad.


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“Ride to Hell: Retribution” is considered one of the worst games of the Xbox 360/PlayStation 3 era.

(Deep Silver)

Such is the case with the games you’ll find below — the worst 50 games of all time, ranked according to their respective Metacritic scores.

These aren’t the games we liked the least, or the games that told us we’d never amount to anything. Instead, what we’ve got here is something slightly more scientific: Reviews aggregation site Metacritic compiles all reviews of games, then it averages those scores into an overall average. This is the bottom 50 from that list (of over 15,000 games), with duplicates removed.

These 50 games are the absolute worst of the worst, according to critics:

50. “Basement Crawl”


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50. “Basement Crawl”

(Bloober Team)

Critic score: 27/100

User score: 2.8/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “Enter the basement, explore dark, sinister arenas and be at one with the insanity. ‘Bomberman’-inspired mechanics bring party games to the next generation level. Staying alive won’t be easy. The only way to survive is to become death itself, crushing all opponents. Fight with, or against your friends in a intensive, packed with action online and offline game modes. And remember, because of the horror-based graphics and themes, it’s best if you don’t play this game alone in the dark. You never know what might be hiding behind you. “

Platform(s): PlayStation 4

49. “Looney Tunes: Acme Arsenal”


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49. “Looney Tunes: Acme Arsenal”

(Warner Bros.)

Critic score: 27/100

User score: 5.1/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘Looney Tunes: Acme Arsenal’ is an action-adventure game featuring seven playable Looney Tunes characters, including Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Tazmanian Devil, Foghorn Leghorn, Marvin the Martian, Gossamer and a special secret character, all rendered in high-definition, next-generation graphics. Engaging in one or two player cooperative gameplay, gamers find themselves immersed in fast-paced combat, puzzle solving challenges and vehicle-based action in rich environments inspired by the popular, outlandish cartoon tales. “

Platform(s): Nintendo Wii, PlayStation 2, Xbox 360

48. “GoDai: Elemental Force”


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48. “GoDai: Elemental Force”

(The 3DO Company)

Critic score: 27/100

User score: 3.8/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “The time has finally come for Hiro to avenge his family and face the forces of darkness alone. His mastery of the four elements is strong, but not yet powerful enough to face the fifth element: the Void. Now Hiro must become a Master of the Elements and complete the Trials of Earth, Wind, Water and Fire. Only then will he be ready to face the powers of darkness in the realm of the final element … the Void awaits.”

Platform(s): PlayStation 2

47. “Rogue Warrior”


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47. “Rogue Warrior”

(Bethesda Softworks)

Critic score: 27/100

User score: 2.8/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘Rogue Warrior’ is a character-driven, first-person-shooter, featuring Richard ‘Demo Dick’ Marcinko’s explosive personality in an action-packed single player campaign, and intense multiplayer combat. Playing as Richard “Demo Dick” Marcinko, you go behind the iron curtain to disrupt a suspected North Korean ballistic missile program.”

Platform(s): Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PC

46. “Fray”


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46. “Fray”

(Brain Candy)

Critic score: 27/100

User score: 2.4/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘Fray’ is a gritty sci-fi game set in 2098, a world where civil society is on the brink of collapse.”

Platform(s): PC

45. “Road Rage”


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45. “Road Rage”

(Maximum Games)

Critic score: 26/100

User score: 2.5/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘Road Rage’ is an over-the-top, knock-down-drag-out motorcycle combat game that tests your skill on a range of badass bikes. Race, fight, and hustle your way through the ranks of an insane outlaw motorcycle gang.”

Platform(s): PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC

44. “Mucha Lucha! Mascaritas of the Lost Code”


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44. “Mucha Lucha! Mascaritas of the Lost Code”

(Ubisoft)

Critic score: 26/100

User score: 4.0/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘Mucha Lucha! Mascaritas of the Lost Code’ is a game so utterly devoid of challenge that actually calling it a game almost seems too generous.”

Platform(s): Game Boy Advance

43. “Stake: Fortune Fighters”


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43. “Stake: Fortune Fighters”

(Metro3D, Inc.)

Critic score: 26/100

User score: 3.7/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “Stake – the ultimate combat event! It’s winner-take-all as the world’s best brawl for supremacy. More than the coveted Stake Emblem is on the line in the wildest competition ever for riches, fame and respect. Enter the arena. Face your foe.”

Platform(s): Xbox

42. “HBO Boxing”


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42. “HBO Boxing”

(Acclaim Entertainment)

Critic score: 26/100

User score: 4.0/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘HBO Boxing’ is another disappointing boxing game that fails to even come close to re-creating the look and feel of the sport in the ring.”

Platform(s): PlayStation

41. “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory”


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41. “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory”

(Global Star Software)

Critic score: 26/100

User score: 2.6/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “Step inside the magical world of Willy Wonka’s famous chocolate factory. Based on the feature film directed by Tim Burton and the classic Roald Dahl book, the game allows players to explore deep inside the factory and play the beloved story as Charlie Bucket.”

Platform(s): PlayStation 2, GameCube, Xbox, Game Boy Advance, PC

40. “R.I.P.D. The Game”


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40. “R.I.P.D. The Game”

(Atlus USA)

Critic score: 26/100

User score: 1.5/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “Based on the 3D supernatural action-adventure film, ‘R.I.P.D.,’ you and your partner strap on the holsters of two lawmen assigned to the otherworld to protect and serve the living from an increasingly destructive array of souls who refuse to move peacefully to the other side. Top-notch teamwork and an arsenal of badass weapons are the keys to defeating your enemies and bringing order back to the world.”

Platform(s): Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PC

39. “KISS Pinball”


There weren't any good images of the game available, so here's a photo of KISS totally rocking out.play

There weren’t any good images of the game available, so here’s a photo of KISS totally rocking out.

(Getty)

Critic score: 26/100

User score: 3.8/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “KISS fans will be disappointed by the distinct lack of KISS, and pinball fans will be disappointed by the distinct lack of pinball.”

Platform(s): PlayStation, PC

38. “Deca Sports Freedom”


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38. “Deca Sports Freedom”

(Hudson Soft)

Critic score: 26/100

User score: 3.7/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘Deca Sports Freedom’ will take sports gaming to the next level and to the Xbox 360 console for the first time with 10 new sporting events designed especially for Kinect. Players will compete in Tennis, Boxing, Archery, Paintball, Beach Volleyball, Dodge Ball, Kendo, Mogul Skiing, Snowboard Cross and even Figure Skating.”

Platform(s): Xbox 360

37. “Tenkai Knights: Brave Battle”


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37. “Tenkai Knights: Brave Battle”

(Bandai Namco)

Critic score: 26/100

User score: 2.7/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “Experience the rush of robotic power in shape-shifting action game ‘Tenkai Knights: Brave Battle’ on Nintendo 3DS and 2DS! Based on the animated TV series, prepare to bring the big guns – and swords! – into play against the villainous Vilius and his Corrupted Army. Can you stop him before he annihilates two entire planets?!”

Platform(s): Nintendo 3DS

36. “Aquaman: Battle for Aquarius”


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36. “Aquaman: Battle for Aquarius”

(TDK Mediactive)

Critic score: 26/100

User score: 2.7/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “Here’s your chance to wield the power of Aquaman, the DC Comics superhero, as he defends the deep-sea city of Atlantis against such enemies as Ocean Master, Black Manta, and the Lava Lord of the Fire Trolls. You must fight to save the lost city by using Aquaman’s super powers, telepathy, and hook-hand. While the game features plenty of intense underwater battles, you can also bombard your enemies from an attack sub in first-person mode.”

Platform(s): Xbox, GameCube, PlayStation 2

35. “Survivor”


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35. “Survivor”

(Robert Voets /CBS)

Critic score: 26/100

User score: 2.6/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “Play as any of the actual Pulau Tiga and Australian Outback cast members or create your own character. See if you have what it takes to become the Ultimate Survivor.”

Platform(s): PC

34. “Jenga World Tour”


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34. “Jenga World Tour”

(Atari)

Critic score: 26/100

User score: 2.8/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “Jenga is based on the world famous wooden block tower building game. Designed to make the most of the innovative control systems on the Wii and DS, the game offers unpredictable, quick- paced, tactical play that combines suspense and risk-taking, where mounting anticipation comes to a crashing climax. “

Platform(s): Nintendo Wii, DS

33. “World War II Combat: Iwo Jima”


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33. “World War II Combat: Iwo Jima”

(Groove Games)

Critic score: 26/100

User score: 2.8/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “Relive the storied Marine assault that landed foreign troops on Japanese soil for the first time in 5000 years. Scenarios and missions are drawn from actual events. 10 levels of single player campaigns that are full of ambient events such as mortar explosions, overhead aircraft and warning sirens that create a truly immersive experience.”

Platform(s): PC, Xbox

32. “Game Party”


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32. “Game Party”

(Midway Games)

Critic score: 25/100

User score: 3.8/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘Game Party’ for the Wii is a collection of classic skill games from around the world, from American sports venues to European gathering spots. Using the Wii’s unique control interface, you can play classics such as darts; modern favorites such as table hockey and hoop shoot, or participate in multiplayer trivia contests. More than a half dozen games are available.”

Platform(s): Wii

31. “Amy”


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31. “Amy”

(Lexis Numerique)

Critic score: 25/100

User score: 3.9/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘Amy’ is a survival horror/action adventure game, where players must protect, and escort the eponymous Amy — an enigmatic eight-year-old autistic girl with curious powers — as they try to get her out of a city overrun with wild creatures and dangerous enemies. The story follows Amy and the player character Lana, a woman who is trying to protect and save her in the disease-ridden town. They must work together to fight or flee from the aberrations, demons, and the military, in the hope of saving not only each other, but also the future of humanity itself.”

Platform(s): Xbox 360, PlayStation 3

30. “Dragon Ball Z: Ultimate Battle 22”


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30. “Dragon Ball Z: Ultimate Battle 22”

(Bandai Namco)

Critic score: 25/100

User score: 4.8/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): ” The Japanese blockbuster is here! An international smash hit, this vintage Dragon Ball Z fighter features 22 famed DBZ warriors for you to recreate epic, one-on-one Dragon Ball Z battles. Easy to play but tough to master, this long-awaited classic offers matchups from the Buu, Frieza and Android Sagas. Experience the DBZ game that has thrilled fans all over the world!”

Platform(s): PlayStation

29. “Call for Heroes: Pompolic Wars”


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29. “Call for Heroes: Pompolic Wars”

(Strategy First)

Critic score: 25/100

User score: 3.2/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “Many years ago, a dimensional portal to the Outer Worlds was suddenly opened, and an enemy from the darkness encroached upon our world. Led by Pompolic, these armies of demonic hordes quickly overran most (but not all) of the planet.The origin of Pompolic is not known, but it is sure that this malevolent spiritual being possesses supernatural power, and his desire is obvious, possess the people and turn them into fellows of his dark army.”

Platform(s): PC, Wii

28. “Batman: Dark Tomorrow”


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28. “Batman: Dark Tomorrow”

(Kemco)

Critic score: 25/100

User score: 3.4/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “In ‘Batman: Dark Tomorrow,’ it’s up to Batman to solve the mystery and save the day. The legendary Caped Crusader must use all his mental and physical skills, batglider capabilities, devices from his utility belt, and sleuthing prowess to fight crime and defeat enemies. You must battle both new and familiar enemies, including Mr. Freeze, Poison Ivy, and the Joker. But in some missions, stealth is just as important as brute force.”

Platform(s): Xbox, GameCube

27. “Stalin vs Martians”


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27. “Stalin vs Martians”

(Mezmer Games)

Critic score: 25/100

User score: 4.1/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘Stalin vs. Martians,’ as the name suggests, is a game both absolutely ridiculous and over-the-top. Fun and accessible, it takes a simple arcade-like approach to the genre of real-time strategy. The player controls the Red Army as it defends Earth from the Martian Invasion of 1942, the highly classified military operation which even today remains a closely guarded state secret.”

Platform(s): PC

26. “Cruis’n”


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26. “Cruis’n”

(Midway)

Critic score: 25/100

User score: 3.7/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “An all new version of the classic Midway arcade racer, ‘Cruis’n’. Choose your ride from an impressive lineup of licensed cars and experience a rush of adrenaline as you race opponents through twelve different street circuits using the Wii Remote to steer and perform outrageous stunts. Win races and earn upgrades including: turbos, body kits, neon and nitrous, allowing you to create the ultimate ride.”

Platform(s): Wii

25. “NBA Unrivaled”


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25. “NBA Unrivaled”

(Tecmo)

Critic score: 24/100

User score: 0.9/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “Paying homage to the old school look and feel of the arcade classics, ‘NBA Unrivaled’ brings back all of the intensity and pulse pounding action.”

Platform(s): Xbox 360, PlayStation 3

24. “Terrawars: New York Invasion”


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24. “Terrawars: New York Invasion”

(Tri Synergy / G2 Games)

Critic score: 24/100

User score: 2.4/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “Without warning, the world is overrun by an alien invasion. The Earth is in chaos. You are John Armstrong, a medical student drafted in to the National Guard. On a critical mission that may help turn the tide, your team is wiped out. Now success depends on you. Will you rise up to the challenge?”

Platform(s): PC

23. “Gravity Games Bike: Street Vert Dirt”


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23. “Gravity Games Bike: Street Vert Dirt”

(Midway)

Critic score: 24/100

User score: 4.0/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘Gravity Games Bike: Street, Vert, Dirt’ delivers the most extreme BMX action available for the next-generation systems. It takes the hottest action-sport to the next level with 21 skilled riders, 10 huge Street, Vert and Dirt courses, and more than 1,500 wicked tricks. Control one of seven professional bike riders, including Fuzzy Hall, Dennis McCoy, Jamie Bestwick, Andre Ellison, Leigh Ramsdell, Reuel Erickson, and Matt Beringer. If you’re good enough to handle these intense challenges, you’ll get the Gravity Games Gold Medal in the Street, Vert, or Dirt competitions … and if you’re really good, you’ll get the Gold in all three.”

Platform(s): PlayStation 2, Xbox

22. “Postal III”


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22. “Postal III”

(Running With Scissors/Akella)

Critic score: 24/100

User score: 3.0/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “The ‘Postal’ series continues in this third installment, using the Source Engine from Valve.”

Platform(s): PC

21. “Game Party Champions”


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21. “Game Party Champions”

(Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment)

Critic score: 24/100

User score: 3.4/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘Game Party Champions’ is the fifth and latest installment of the Game Party franchise and available exclusively for Wii U. The game’s pick-up and play style promises to appeal to experienced and new gamers alike. Using the system’s innovative new GamePad, players tilt, turn and touch the controller to play arcade, sports and party games in entirely new ways.”

Platform(s): Nintendo Wii U

20. “Legends of Wrestling II”


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20. “Legends of Wrestling II”

(Acclaim)

Critic score: 24/100

User score: 3.7/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘Legends of Wrestling II’ takes you through the wrestling hall of fame with the top grapplers that are battling for squared-circle supremacy. Play as your favorite wrestler–including Hulk Hogan, Andre “The Giant,” and Bret “Hitman” Hart–each with signature entrances, taunts, and moves. A new storyline and career mode let you battle for the respect of promoters and fans while fighting for the heavyweight championship crown.”

Platform(s): Nintendo GameBoy Advance, Nintendo GameCube, PlayStation 2, Xbox

19. “Pulse Racer”


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19. “Pulse Racer”

(Jaleco)

Critic score: 24/100

User score: 2.8/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘Pulse Racer’ takes you to a future where racers careen toward the clouds in sleek vehicles to gain an advantage over the competition. As a racer, you’ll need a risk-taking mentality; but more importantly, you’ll need a vehicle that suits your driving style and a driver who matches your technique. Linked directly to your vehicle, your body will be pushed to the limit in a variety of high-speed tracks. Harass your opponents with missiles, mines, or direct plasma beams and slingshot around tight turns.

Platform(s): Xbox

18. “Fighter Within”


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18. “Fighter Within”

(Ubisoft)

Critic score: 23/100

User score: 2.8/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “Unleash your inner fighter to beat your friends with your bare knuckles. Discover ‘Fighter Within,’ the next-gen game that provides you with the excitement of a real fight, throwing you into a total-body combat experience. Test your real fighting skills thanks to the next gen of motion recognition. Kinect for Xbox One arms the game with realistic fighting moves using 1:1 precision movement tracking.”

Platform(s): Xbox One

17. “FlatOut 3: Chaos & Destruction”


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17. “FlatOut 3: Chaos & Destruction”

(Strategy First)

Critic score: 23/100

User score: 3.3/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘FlatOut 3: Chaos & Destruction’ is demolition racing at its extreme. Real world physics with 9 different game modes, and over 47 different vehicles available. Players may choose to race, smash and destroy their opponents in a wide variety of online and offline options. “

Platform(s): PC

16. “Homie Rollerz”


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16. “Homie Rollerz”

(Destineer)

Critic score: 23/100

User score: 2.4/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘Homie Rollerz’ is a fast-paced, mayhem-laden kart racer where players can pick one of the 10 most popular Homies, customize their slick rides, then trick, hop, and battle through courses with settings, shortcuts, and secrets as unique as the Homies themselves.”

Platform(s): Nintendo DS

15. “Charlie’s Angels”


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15. “Charlie’s Angels”

(Ubisoft)

Critic score: 23/100

User score: 3.3/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “Join Natalie, Dylan, and Alex for an intense adventure based on the ‘Charlie’s Angels’ movies. You’ll need various disguises, clever tactics, and acrobatic martial arts moves to ensure a successful mission. Master the different styles of all three Angels as you battle 32 different types of enemies across the globe. You can switch between characters at anytime during the game. ‘Charlie’s Angels’ movie stars — Cameron Diaz, Lucy Liu, Drew Barrymore, and Bernie Mac — supply the voices.”

Platform(s): Nintendo GameCube, PlayStation 2

14. “Rambo: The Video Game”


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14. “Rambo: The Video Game”

(Reef Entertainment)

Critic score: 23/100

User score: 1.6/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘Rambo: The Video Game’ puts players in Rambo’s combat boots and takes them on an action-packed adventure through the iconic action- sequences and story-arcs of ‘First Blood,’ ‘Rambo: First Blood Part II’ and ‘Rambo III.’ The game features the original movie voice-tracks of John Rambo and Col. Samuel Trautman as well as selected music from the original ‘Rambo Trilogy.'”

Platform(s): Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PC

13. “Fast & Furious: Showdown”


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13. “Fast & Furious: Showdown”

(Activision)

Critic score: 22/100

User score: 1.2/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘Fast & Furious: Showdown’ takes some of the franchise’s iconic characters on a high-stakes adventure around the globe that delivers takedowns, heists, hijacks and havoc. Players can switch roles with their AI partners or team up with a friend for two-person local co-op. Completed objectives unlock new vehicle performance and customization options to make each player’s ride unique.”

Platform(s): Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PC, Wii U, 3DS

12. “Drake of the 99 Dragons”


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12. “Drake of the 99 Dragons”

(Majesco Games)

Critic score: 22/100

User score: 1.8/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “Drake is out for revenge in a supernatural Hong Kong world. You’ll join Drake in 25 intense missions, as he battles ruthless villains and female assassins with an array of firearms, short and long blade weapons, and thrown melee weapons. Use Drake’s power and agility to slow down the action, fire guns in any direction, and run and backflip off of walls. When you become injured, you can feed on the souls of the dead to replenish your health.”

Platform(s): Xbox, PC

11. “Afro Samurai 2: Revenge of Kuma – Volume 1”


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11. “Afro Samurai 2: Revenge of Kuma – Volume 1”

(Versus Evil)

Critic score: 21/100

User score: 2.7/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “Head out on a journey of redemption, driven by bitter-sweet revenge. The saga of Afro Samurai continues but this time follows the path of Kuma, one of Afro’s closest childhood friends.”

Platform(s): PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC

10. “Infestation: Survivor Stories” (Formerly: “The War Z”)


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10. “Infestation: Survivor Stories” (Formerly: “The War Z”)

(OP Productions)

Critic score: 20/100

User score: 1.7/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “It has been 5 years since the outbreak, giving rise to a post-apocalyptic nightmare with 95% of the human race wiped out. To survive, you’ll require food, weapons, and other supplies. Some of you will scavenge as you negotiate the terrain, others will be forced to fight for survival as they encounter zombies and other players. Every decision has an effect on whether you live or how quickly you meet your death.”

Platform(s): PC

9. “Deal or No Deal”


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9. “Deal or No Deal”

(NBC)

Critic score: 20/100

User score: 1.9/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “The premise is simple: You have 26 briefcases in front of you. Each one contains a different amount of money. Open each case one by one, and try to find the briefcase with the biggest amount of money. Deal Or No Deal?”

Platform(s): Nintendo DS

8. “Alone in the Dark: Illumination”


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8. “Alone in the Dark: Illumination”

(Atari)

Critic score: 19/100

User score: 1.2/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “A dire curse has shrouded the town of Lorwich in an unnatural darkness, as monstrous hordes emerge from beyond the realm of nightmares to sow chaos on the land. As one of four heroes, you must battle the minions of Cthulhu with the force of arms and the power of illumination.”

Platform(s): PC

7. “SPOGS Racing”


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7. “SPOGS Racing”

(D2CspoG)

Critic score: 18/100

User score: 3.6/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “Race along in distinctively unique ‘SPOGS Racers’ that can be personalized, customized and modified with in-game images and vehicle parts. Gamers control their SPOGS as they try their best to smash into their opponents to steal upgraded parts on-the-fly in the title’s innovative Crash ‘N Grab gameplay. Featuring several game modes, a variety of track types including outrageous stunt tracks with loops and jumps, multiple difficultly modes and control schemes, racing power-ups, weapons, and head-to-head multiplayer, SPOGS Racing offers plenty of fun for gamers of all ages and experiences.”

Platform(s): Nintendo Wii

6. “Double Dragon II: Wander of the Dragons”


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6. “Double Dragon II: Wander of the Dragons”

(Cyberfront Korea Corp.)

Critic score: 17/100

User score: 1.5/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “A remake the ’80s ‘Double Dragon II’ game. Team up and take control of Jimmy and Billy, whose looks and actions are modernized. Battle through the newly drawn 3D stages, which hide their own secrets and surprises.”

Platform(s): Xbox 360

5. “Vroom in the Night Sky”


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5. “Vroom in the Night Sky”

(Poisoft)

Critic score: 17/100

User score: 3.2/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘Vroom in the Night Sky’ is a magical bike action game. There are various night skies in this world, and it is the work of Magical Girls to collect Stardusts there. You become the Magical Girl Luna, ride a magical bike, fly around the night sky and collect Stardusts!”

Platform(s): Nintendo Switch

4. “Leisure Suit Larry: Box Office Bust “


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4. “Leisure Suit Larry: Box Office Bust “

(Funsta)

Critic score: 17/100

User score: 1.7/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “In this third-person adventure game, Larry takes a summer job working on his uncle Larry’s movie lot doing odd jobs and trying to uncover a mole from another studio who threatens to air the studio’s dirty laundry in the tabloids. ‘Leisure Suit Larry: Box Office Bust’ is a rollicking, innuendo-laden lampoon of Hollywood that features open-world sandbox gameplay that includes exploration, platforming, racing and puzzle-solving to complete missions. “

Platform(s): Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PC, Mobile

3. “Yaris”


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3. “Yaris”

(Backbone Entertainment)

Critic score: 17/100

User score: 4.2/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “Hop into a Toyota Yaris and drive it on crazy tracks loaded with stubborn obstacles, cool powerups, and intense enemy action. The relentlessly twisted courses in Yaris might have loops or even be tube-shaped, but the Yaris never has to worry about sliding off track, as it defies gravity by scaling side-walls and going all topsy-turvy.”

Platform(s): Xbox 360

2. “Ride to Hell: Retribution”

Critic score: 16/100

User score: 1.2/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘Ride to Hell’ is not for the faint-hearted; it’s aimed heavily at the player who wants to become fully involved in the original West Coast biker culture. With its hard drinking, bare-knuckle environment, this is as close to the action as you can get. “

Platform(s): Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PC

1. “Family Party: 30 Great Games — Obstacle Arcade”


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1. “Family Party: 30 Great Games — Obstacle Arcade”

(D3 Publisher)

Critic score: 11/100

User score: 1.1/10

Plot summary (from Metacritic): “‘Family Party: 30 Great Games Obstacle Arcade’ brings home wacky and wild competitions for kids of all ages.”

Platform(s): Nintendo Wii U

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This week in video games, April 16, 2018: New Friday the 13th game makes you help Jason kill campers

Posted on April 17, 2018  in Video Games

This week, a subscription service offers new games, including six Batman titles and indie efforts, and a quirky new game asks if you can spare a minute. But first, a new puzzle game is both an homage and a send-up of the iconic Friday the 13th movies.

Bejeweled creator murders Friday the 13th with new game

A new game sending up the Friday the 13th horror-movie franchise was released last Friday, April 13.

Friday the 13th: Killer Puzzle, from B.C.-based Blue Wizard Digital, both celebrates and pokes fun at the tropes to be found in the horror movies featuring Jason Voorhees, but at its core is a puzzle game. It just so happens that you complete the puzzle by helping Jason murder campers and camp counsellors.

The mechanics were developed for Blue Wizard’s earlier game, Slayaway Camp (available on most platforms, including consoles). Players control the movement of the killer around an isometric board and have to cause the death of the bystanders—either overtly, with all manner of weapons, or by scaring them into environmental hazards like campfires and wood chippers.

The levels get more difficult as you progress, and you might find yourself frustrated to the point you’re almost willing to commit murder, if you’re not careful.

Blue Wizard was founded by Jason Kapalka, who cofounded PopCap Games and had a hand in creating Bejeweled, Peggle, and Plants vs Zombies.

Friday the 13th: Killer Puzzle is free to play on Android and iOS mobile devices. It’s also available on Steam.

Friday the 13th: Killer Puzzle Trailer

Get used to dying while playing Minit

Minit is a game you play in 60-second segments. You die every minute, but you respawn with the items and powers you already acquired. The goal of the game is to learn the map, solve the puzzles, and work out the sequence of events—all in one-minute increments. Ultimately, after hours of trial and error and practice, you’ll be able to defeat the final boss and win the game in 60 seconds. 

With pixelated art in black and white, this is a decidedly lo-fi affair, but it’s different than anything you’ve played before, and it’s an interesting and compelling challenge.

EA’s subscription service adds Batman and indie games

Origin Access, the service from Electronic Arts that gives subscribers unlimited access to almost 100 games, has added titles from outside publishers.

Previously, only EA published games were available on Origin, but in March Warner Bros. Interactive made a half-dozen games available, including the Batman Arkham trilogy (Arkham Asylum, Arkham City, and Arkham Origins), and Lego Batman 1 through 3.

Also coming to the service are indie titles, including puzzle game The Witness and turn-based role-playing game Wasteland 2.

Origin Access games are only playable on Windows.

Games released or releasing soon

  • God of War, which continues the epic of Kratos, releases this week. It’s only available on PS4.
  • Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice, with a protagonist suffering a psychotic break, is now available on Xbox One. We called it “masterful and unnerving”.
  • Yakuza 6: The Song of Life is exclusive to PS4.

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Video: Commonwealth Games Closing Ceremony

Posted on April 17, 2018  in Video Games

The 2018 Commonwealth Games came to an end, with triathlete Erica Hawley carrying the Bermuda flag during the closing ceremony held in the Gold Coast, Australia.

Commonweatlh Games Bermuda, April 16 2018

Bermuda had eight athletes competing in four disciplines, with Tyler Butterfield, Tre Houston, Tyrone Smith, Kyle Webb, Flora Duffy, Micah Franklin, Erica Hawley and Tyler Smith all representing the island, with the entire team doing a stellar job at these Games.

They claimed one Gold Medal, one National Record, a Plate Final, six top 20 finishes and made the island’s first ever showing in team triathlon.

Bermuda’s Chef de Mission Katura Horton-Perinchief posted the video above and praised the team on her Instagram page, saying, “What an incredible experience. We came, we saw, we conquered.

“8 athletes, 1 gold medal, 1 national record, 6 top 20 finishes…nothing short of impressive. From tiny Bermuda, 8 warriors. 8 stars. They’re ours, Bermy. And I could not be more proud of that fact.”

click here Bermuda Commonwealth Games 2018

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Ten Hollywood movies based on video games

Posted on April 17, 2018  in Video Games

A still featuring actor Dwayne Johnson from the American monster film ‘Rampage’.

A still featuring actor Dwayne Johnson from the American monster film ‘Rampage’.

New Delhi: American monster film Rampage that released in India last Friday is loosely based on the video game series of the same name by American game developer Midway Games. Here are ten other Hollywood films based on video games.

Street Fighter (1994): The Japanese-American action film was based on the Street Fighter video game series about a martial arts hero fighting a tyrannical dictator. Starring Jean-Claude Van Damme and Raúl Juliá, it made $99 million at the box office.

Mortal Kombat (1995): The American fantasy action film directed by Paul W.S. Anderson, based on the fighting game series Mortal Kombat follows a warrior monk, a soldier and an actor, all three trying to combat an evil sorcerer. Starring Robin Shou, Linden Ashby, Bridgette Wilson and Christopher Lambert, it made $122 million in box office collections.

Lara Croft: Tomb Raider (2001): The Angelina Jolie-starrer action adventure film was based on the Tomb Raider video game series. The Simon West directed film earned $274 million at the box office and spawned a sequel, titled Lara Croft: Tomb Raider–The Cradle of Life, which was released in 2003.

House of the Dead (2003): The action horror film was an adaptation of a light gun arcade game of the same name. Directed by Uwe Boll, it made $13 million at the box office.

DOA: Dead or Alive (2006): The martial arts film was loosely based on the Team Ninja fighting game series Dead or Alive. It was directed by Corey Yuen and earned $7 million in box office collections.

Max Payne (2008): The John Moore directed neo-noir action thriller was based on the video game series of the same name about a cop journeying through New York’s criminal world to investigate the death of his wife and child. The Mark Wahlberg and Mila Kunis-starrer made $85 million at the box office.

Far Cry (2008): The Uwe Boll directed film has been adapted from a video game of the same name. The Til Schweiger-starrer was a box office disaster at collections of $743,634.

Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time (2008): The action fantasy film directed by Mike Newell is based on the video game series of the same name about a prince and princess fighting a villain who threatens to destroy the world. The Jake Gyllenhaal, Gemma Arterton and Ben Kingsley-starrer made $336 million at the box office.

Need for Speed (2014): The 3D action thriller based on the video game series of the same name revolves around a street racer played by Aaron Paul. The Scott Waugh directed film earned $203 million at the box office.

Resident Evil: The Final Chapter (2016): The science fiction action film directed by Paul W.S. Anderson is a sequel to Resident Evil: Retribution (2012) and the sixth and final instalment in the Resident Evil film series, loosely based on the survival horror video game series Resident Evil. The Milla Jovovich, Ali Larter, Shawn Roberts and Ruby Rose-starrer made $312 million at the box office.

All figures have been sourced from movie website Box Office Mojo.

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