Halo 3 Articles RSS Feed | GameSkinny.com Halo 3 RSS Feed on GameSkinny.com https://www.gameskinny.com/ en Launch Media Network The Best Power Weapons in Halo History https://www.gameskinny.com/rmrjv/the-best-power-weapons-in-halo-history https://www.gameskinny.com/rmrjv/the-best-power-weapons-in-halo-history Fri, 20 Dec 2019 09:51:40 -0500 John Schutt

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There you have it: our list of the best and brightest power weapons to ever grace the Halo franchise. Some of the weapons are powerful, others are borderline broken. Still, others just annoying. However, they're all capable of wrecking house in almost anyone's hands.

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Let us know which power weapons would have made your list, and where you first encountered them.

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'Till next time...

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Best Fully Automatic Weapon: The SAW

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Do you absolutely, positively need to kill everything within 60 feet and still have half of your drum mag left over? Pick up the SAW and listen to the salt.

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Seventy-two rounds of pure, unadulterated death to campaign enemies and other players alike, this bullet hose was one of the easiest weapons to use, and the Halo 4 version takes the cake simply because that's where we first saw it used.

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More importantly, it is consistent. You might have headshot capabilities in Halo 5, but there was always a chance you could miss and need that one extra bullet to finish the job. Not in the SAW's original iteration. Thirteen rounds. That was it. That was a kill. And if you managed to pick up any additional ammo, heaven help that poor, dead enemy team.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/c/o/n/concussion-rifle-8d3f3.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/c/o/n/concussion-rifle-8d3f3.png","type":"slide","id":"205291","description":"

Best Light Launcher: The Concussion Rifle

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There isn't a huge number of light launchers in the Halo franchise, but the Halo: Reach concussion rifle is the best of the bunch. The other options might do more damage and might have more style, but none are as effective as the concussion rifle.

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Five shots of high-explosives per magazine, an easily trackable arc, and high projectile speed make this weapon deadly and plenty of fun to use.

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Sometimes easier is better, as much as we don't want it to be.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/g/r/a/gravity-hammer-c0f40.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/g/r/a/gravity-hammer-c0f40.jpg","type":"slide","id":"205289","description":"

Best Melee: The Gravity Hammer

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The Energy Sword might have a lunge and insane tracking, but it doesn't have the sheer killing potential of the Gravity Hammer. And the Halo 3 Hammer is unabashedly the king. It's grimy, it's a little wonky to use, and it creates silly ragdolls. But those are just three reasons we love it.

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Without the Gravity Hammer, we wouldn't have Griffball. People wouldn't have the memories of smashing their friends into the dirt in a custom match, and all we'd be left with is a cross-map energy blade that makes zombies.

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Best Energy: The Spartan Laser

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Style plays a big part in my selection here, but taking out enemies instantly from across the map with a shoulder-mounted laser cannon is a hard feeling to replicate. And which version of the Spartan Laser is the best? 

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Clearly the Halo 3 Spartan Laser. You get more shots overall, it takes some finesse to use, and it will destroy anything and everything that crosses its path. It doesn't matter if you're in a tank, Ghost, Banshee, or just waiting around a corner. If the Spartan Laser comes your way, you're dead.

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Give up hope all who see the red beam of death.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/r/o/c/rocket-launcher-d1a26.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/r/o/c/rocket-launcher-d1a26.jpg","type":"slide","id":"205286","description":"

Best Explosive: The Rocket Launcher

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There are no bad rocket launchers, but the Halo: Reach variant probably takes the cake. Speedy rockets, huge explosive radius, can track vehicles after a short lock-on time, and a healthy reload speed — what more can you want?

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The only hangup for this launcher is the sometimes significant effect gravity has on each rocket, making cross-map shots tricky at best. Still, if you play your cards right, with four rockets per pickup, you can and should be able to take out the enemy team, their vehicles, and their will to live.

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If only we could take the thing to Blood Gulch...

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Last time, we talked about the most powerful core weapons in Halo history. I included the shotgun and sniper rifle in that list, even though they technically fall into the "power weapons" category. I made the choice because, while they can change the pace of a game entirely, they are — and have always been — at the core of the Halo multiplayer experience.

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The weapons on this list won't just alter the course of an entire match  they're often borderline overpowered in anyone's hands. Where the sniper and, to a lesser degree, the shotgun take aim, spacing, and map knowledge to use properly, you only have to pick up these power weapons a few times to understand and use them well.

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The Best Core Weapons in Halo History https://www.gameskinny.com/u5lyc/the-best-core-weapons-in-halo-history https://www.gameskinny.com/u5lyc/the-best-core-weapons-in-halo-history Wed, 11 Dec 2019 15:57:35 -0500 John Schutt

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The Assault Rifle

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There's a lot of vanilla Halo on this list, but that's where most of the broken weapons lived. The original AR wasn't a world-beater in a game where that pistol lived, but no other version had nearly the magazine size and therefore sheer bullet-hose potential.

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60 rounds. That was how many bullets you could lay into someone before needing a single reload. Later titles cut that number to almost half, in addition to cutting the damage slightly.

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It was a sad day when the Halo 3 assault rifle made its debut. If nothing else, these significant nerfs were a sign of how powerful the weapon had been at one point, even in a game filled with powerful weapons.

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---

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Let us know what memories you made with the best weapons in Halo history.

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Now I'm looking forward to the PC release of Halo Combat Evolved so I can return to Blood Gulch and do... well, Blood Gulch things.

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You know the ones. 

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For more Halo, be sure to check our review of Halo Reach Remastered, Bungie's multiplayer masterclass. 

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The Sniper Rifle

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I'm bending the rules a little bit here, but the best Sniper Rifle ultimately comes down to personal preference. Appearance, sound, ease/skill of use, where you started in the franchise — all of these factor into which sniper is your #1. 

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For me, I think the Halo: Reach sniper is my favorite. I know it's not everyone's choice, but I like the bass of the shot, the clicks of the ejection and reload, and the snappiness of a good headshot across a map. 

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Halo 4 and Halo 3 also have good snipers, and I think I like the sound of 4's is the best, but the total package doesn't do it for me. 

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/h/o/shotgun-c08d9.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/h/o/shotgun-c08d9.png","type":"slide","id":"204899","description":"

The Shotgun

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Out of pistol ammo? That would be a problem if you don't have the original shotgun from Halo Combat Evolved.

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If you do have it, well, everything is fine. Every living thing within five meters will be dead momentarily. 

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The original Halo's shotgun could and would kill to a ludicrous distance, had plenty of ammo, and employed just the right amount of speed to its reload. Even better, it had style, gave off a chunky sound when fired, and allowed for a quick melee follow up if anything was still moving after eating a load of buckshot.

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Other games might have had better aesthetics for their shotguns, but nothing beats death by a thousand pellets.

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The Battle Rifle

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On its introduction in Halo 2, the battle rifle — BR for short — became an instant hit. Generous, but not overbearing, auto-aim, and low time to kill paired with a healthy magazine and hitscan mechanics quickly elevated the BR to legendary quality long before Halo 3 was a twinkle in gamers' eyes.

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What differentiated the Halo 2 BR from its counterparts in later entries, including the remaster by 343, were the various button glitches players could exploit to make the weapon even deadlier. The best players could do things more casual players could only dream of. 

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/m/a/g/magnum-2da50.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/m/a/g/magnum-2da50.jpg","type":"slide","id":"204897","description":"

The Pistol

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There's no contest here. You could — and everyone did — snipe other players across the largest Halo maps with the pistol from Halo: Combat Evolved. If you played Blood Gulch, you were sniped by a pistol. And you sniped with the pistol.

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It was just how things worked. 

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The pistol's power came from a near-complete lack of recoil and little if any damage falloff. Add in semi-automatic fire and a low time to kill and a healthy store of ammo, and you've got yourself a killing machine without peer.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/h/a/l/halo-splash-bd07d.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/h/a/l/halo-splash-bd07d.jpg","type":"slide","id":"204896","description":"

The Halo franchise is almost 20 years, and in that time, players have had the chance to use a number of different weapons and have had to deal with even more frequent weapon changes. Between each series entry, developers Bungie or 343 Industries tuned the arsenal to their liking, causing the occasional community outcry in the process.

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Still, there is a solid core of Halo weaponry anyone familiar with the series knows and loves: the pistol, battle rifle, shotgun, sniper rifle, assault rifle. And throughout the series, each gun in this noble arsenal has seen a king; it's the most powerful version that would be reduced to nothing in future titles.

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Here, we catalog the best weapons in all of Halo, focusing specifically on the core group mentioned above. We've listed the best power weapons separately. 

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Halo: The Master Chief Collection Set For PC Release https://www.gameskinny.com/uo1k7/halo-the-master-chief-collection-set-for-pc-release https://www.gameskinny.com/uo1k7/halo-the-master-chief-collection-set-for-pc-release Wed, 13 Mar 2019 12:31:14 -0400 Adamo Umbra

During Microsoft's most recent Inside Xbox stream, it was officially announced that Halo: The Master Chief Collection is headed to PC. With this collection, PC players will be able to experience the entire Halo franchise up to, and including, Halo 4.

That said, not all of the games included in the collection will be available simultaneously — instead, they will release one by one. This staggered release will allow the community to offer feedback on each individual title, which 343 Studios intends to use to guarantee that a "first class" Halo experience is offered to PC players.

Halo: Reach will be the first game available, and it will be followed by releases of the first four numbered entries in the series. Furthermore, it was also announced that Halo: Reach will release on Xbox One — its multiplayer features will be freely available, while its campaign and firefight mode will be offered as DLC. 

Players will be able to purchase each of the games included in Halo: The Master Chief Collection as they are released. They will be available from the Microsoft Store and Steam.

Halo: The Master Chief Collection for PC is a collaborative effort between 343 Studios, Splash Damage, and Ruffian. This need for collaboration is due to the fact that the bulk of 343's staff is currently working on Halo: Infinite. While not much has officially been confirmed about this forthcoming Halo title, there has been indication that it will offer an experience that is unique to the franchise. 

While the PC release date for Halo: The Master Chief Collection isn't currently decided, 343 may be sharing more information during the upcoming HCS Invitational broadcast, which is set for March 17. If that is not the case, hopefully excited fans will get more details on the collection in short order.

In other Halo news, Microsoft recently announced the Halo Insider Program, which allows players to sign up for early testing on upcoming Halo games, products, and more. 

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9 Funny Halo Glitches You Can't Help But Laugh At https://www.gameskinny.com/zlxjn/9-funny-halo-glitches-you-cant-help-but-laugh-at https://www.gameskinny.com/zlxjn/9-funny-halo-glitches-you-cant-help-but-laugh-at Sat, 15 Apr 2017 15:02:07 -0400 tofuslayer

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Dancing Elites
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I'm not sure that this is the classic dancing Elite glitch, but this clip from Halo 5 is too good not to share. This is another one that puzzles me. I can't really explain what's happening here and I don't think I can dismiss this one as a lag issue. Whatever the cause of this glitch is, I think it's fantastic. I also laughed harder than I should have when he got stomped out at the end of the clip.

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---

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And with that, I conclude my list of 9 Halo glitches that you can't help but laugh at. Some are scarier than others, but at the end of the day, they're all pretty hilarious, no matter who they happen to.

Know of any even funnier Halo glitches? Let us know about them in the comments below!

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/h/a/l/halo3-32875391-full-7bfbb.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/h/a/l/halo3-32875391-full-7bfbb.jpg","type":"slide","id":"155843","description":"
Undead Scarab
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This is another one that is half-terrifying and half-funny to me. On the one hand, there's something about seeing a blown-up Scarab come back to life that is somewhat nightmarish. But on the other hand, seeing one hobbling around on two legs is laugh-inducing in a weird kind of way. (It counts as a laugh if you're laughing out of disbelief, right?)

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Anyway, if you play Halo 3 and want to experience this glitch for yourself, check out this tutorial below. If you just want to see footage of the Undead Scarab in action, skip to 4:34 and decide for yourself if it's funny or scary.

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"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/h/a/l/halo3-80367997-full-04643.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/h/a/l/halo3-80367997-full-04643.jpg","type":"slide","id":"155840","description":"
Quicksand
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As seen in this image from Nostromo II on Bungie, this unfortunate glitch in Halo 3 caused unsuspecting players to be sucked right into the floor and die a twitchy, painful-looking death with no warning at all. I'm not entirely sure what causes this to happen, but I'm assuming it's the result of lagging. There's a part of me that doesn't want to laugh because it's kind of terrifying, but there's also something about it that's really funny.

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Wall Hacking
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Also called "Ghost hacking," but I suppose that in this case, it might be more appropriate to call it "Phantom hacking." Basically what happens here is that if you're moving fast enough, you can go through walls because the game will not register the wall in time.

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This case is exceptionally strange to me because it is my understanding that once you pass through the wall, you die. In a strange turn of events, it looks like this driver somehow managed to go right through the wall and off the map.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/3071890a381bcd58d90029cd50885054.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/3071890a381bcd58d90029cd50885054.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10707","description":"
Corpse Glitch
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Glitches with corpses are one of the more common ones in most of the Halo games. Most of us have seen videos of breakdancing corpse in Halo. This one is another Halo: Reach beta glitch where the corpse inexplicably starts waving just his arm. While some of the other corpse glitches are kind of creepy with all the spasms, this one is oddly friendly, as if the corpse is waving at you ... welcoming you to Hell ... 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/h/a/l/halo3-68885402-full-971bc.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/h/a/l/halo3-68885402-full-971bc.jpg","type":"slide","id":"155842","description":"
Character Stretch Glitch
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One of my personal favorites is a fairly common glitch that occurs in almost all the Halo games -- the character stretch glitch. It's so common we could make a list by itself of all the best character stretch images on the internet.

While there are definitely some more extreme instances of this glitch (such as the first image of this slideshow), there's something about this screenshot from Cheese Chex on Bungie that I find so hilarious. This Spartan looks like some weird, disfigured bird ... or something. 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/c/r/screenshot-4be73.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/c/r/screenshot-4be73.jpg","type":"slide","id":"155983","description":"
Weaponless Glitch
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This glitch occurs in almost all the Halo games, usually as a result of overloading the map with too many objects. This specific image comes from an individual who was wielding a hammer in Forge World for Halo: Reach. Then he went weaponless.

While it is one of the more common glitches, I’ll never stop thinking it’s funny seeing someone holding a phantom weapon. There's something about a weaponless Spartan that just looks ridiculous. These guys were meant to be soldiers. 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/6e3e6bf7a957aca926038cf73c40cc83.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/6e3e6bf7a957aca926038cf73c40cc83.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10706","description":"
Banshee Glitch
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Banshees have been known to do what they want at times, resulting in a lot of Banshee glitches in the Halo series. I'm not exactly sure what caused this one, but, like many of the glitches in Halo, I'm going to chalk this one up to some sort of lag. Somehow I feel like there's something oddly soothing about giggling at a Banshee floating around like a broken bumper car.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/e/o/d/eod-kats-arm-jorge-chest-8c322.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/e/o/d/eod-kats-arm-jorge-chest-8c322.jpg","type":"slide","id":"155999","description":"
Armor Permutation Glitch
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In the Halo Reach beta, some users reported severe armor lag that caused armor permutations to change. These instances usually occurred upon death, but in rare cases, it happened to players while alive. This perfectly timed screenshot, courtesy of Halo Wikia, features an individual who looks horrified at what is happening. Or maybe just embarrassed about their pauldron being on the wrong side. 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/g/l/i/glitch4-f1d3f.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/g/l/i/glitch4-f1d3f.jpg","type":"slide","id":"156019","description":"

Over the years, the Halo games have brought joy to so many lives all over the world. We all know it, and I would argue that most of us love it. As far as first-person shooters go, it's definitely one of the best and most widely played.

And although most of us play Halo for its competitive nature, another highly entertaining aspect of the game is the occasional glitch you'll run into. While they can be really annoying when you're in the middle of a campaign or a game of CTF, they can be extremely funny when it's not happening to you -- and sometimes they're even so hilarious it doesn't matter who they happen to. 

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So to celebrate Halo franchise as a whole (and for me, the upcoming ESL Halo Pro League summer season!), here's a compilation of some great glitches throughout Halo history.

"}]]]>
Top 5 Online Gaming Community Experiences: Places of Belonging https://www.gameskinny.com/1paiq/top-5-online-gaming-community-experiences-places-of-belonging https://www.gameskinny.com/1paiq/top-5-online-gaming-community-experiences-places-of-belonging Sun, 26 Jun 2016 10:41:46 -0400 Phil Fry

In online gaming, the players who inhabit the community can often influence whether or not new players choose to play that game in the first place. Communities are built on shared interests, respect, and social interaction.

If a community is toxic -- that is, unwelcoming, unsupportive, or even just impatient -- new players and community members may turn away from whatever game that community centers on. 

From my own experiences, one of the most toxic communities I've ever had the displeasure of discovering would be that of the widely popular competitive MOBA style game, League of Legends. We could spend time discussing why League of Legends is a toxic community, and even build a list made up of other online communities that ooze toxicity.

But we're going to take the high road, and we're focusing instead on the best overall community experiences you can find in online gaming (thus far). 

Admittedly, this list is comprised of my own personal experiences with these communities -- but if you were lucky enough to experience these communities, you'll probably find yourself agreeing with the games on this list.

Community #1: Town of Salem 

Originally a browser game, Town of Salem was made available on Steam in December of 2014. Starting up a round of Town of Salem, players are dropped into a group of 7-15 individuals with unique roles. The game is in the same style as classic card games of Mafia and Werewolf.

[via Town of Salem Wiki] 

In classic mode, players are either townsfolk with varying abilities, mafia members, the serial killer, or obtain neutral roles like "Executioner" and "Jester". No matter the role, players have different goals.

If you're part of the town, your goal is to figure out which players are mafia members, or who's the SK. If you're in the mafia or you're the SK, you seek to eliminate town members and deceive the town into believing you're a good guy. 

Each game is split into Night and Day rounds. During the night, mafia members and the SK attack unsuspecting players. Town roles like the Sheriff try to uncover information about others by investigating them, and Jailors have the ability to place a person in prison to face interrogation. 

The game relies heavily on player interaction, and each new game has a different set of circumstances that can unfold in countless ways.

It's a lot of fun to experience a community like the one in Salem, because players act uniquely in each of their roles. Every player has a different play style for the role they are given, and often games can become grippingly suspenseful, and leave you questioning what could happen next. 

[via Steam Store]

The community is diverse, and with each new game, you're meeting new players who change the game in their own way. Although matches can sometimes be short in duration, you may find yourself playing far more rounds of Salem than you realize. 

Community #2: Splatoon 

Despite the game's online features lacking voice communication, something that is usually vital to online console gaming, the community of Nintendo's Splatoon is active and dedicated -- contrary to some who believed the community would not last long. 

Although it's difficult to meet other players in-game, the community that makes up Splatoon is wide and numerous. Players find themselves in teamwork based game modes that encourage players to coordinate to conquer their foes. 

When Splatfests are announced, the community only increases in number, because players who may not be as active as they once were come back to participate in the weekend-long event. 

[via Splatoon Wiki] 

Furthermore, over at Squidboards, community discussion occurs over all aspects of Splatoon everyday. For players who wish to find other squids to team up with, utilizing the forums would likely yield positive responses. 

Community #3: World of Warcraft (Pre-Cataclysm) 

The community of players who make up the world of Azeroth today are different from the ones who used to. Of course, there are still countless individuals who still play World of Warcraft, and have since vanilla days, but overall, the community that existed prior to the Cataclysm expansion was one of the best around. 

Before Garrisons, and Dungeon finder, players of World of Warcraft spent much more time interacting and collaborating with other players of the game. Players used to take on difficult tasks and quests together, meeting through the game, and often times built long-lasting friendships that transcended the virtual world of Azeroth into the real world. 

In order to acquire the best gear, players had to join guilds and commit time to the game and their community so that everyone advanced together, and this level of collaborative interaction set the standard for a lot of future MMOs and online games. 

You may say that because the game has changed to focus on more individual play-experience that the community has changed as well, but this is not the case. Classic WoW private servers only exist because there is a community of WoW players who miss what the community experience of WoW used to be. 

Now, there are even more communities of WoW players based on the WoW experiences of those who make up these communities. There are WoW players who value and desire to play older versions of the game, and there are also WoW players who enjoy the WoW of today, or maybe even recent history. 

World of Warcraft has a diverse range of communities all encompassed around a single game, and that is nothing short of impressive that one game can allow for many different kinds of playerbases. 

If you are a WoW player, or you used to be, there is a community of other WoW players out there just like you. 

Community #4: Red Dead Redemption 

Rockstar's old west Red Dead Redemption was a phenomenal game for its single-player story mode alone. What some gamers may not know, is that the community of Red Dead's online free-roam mode made the game even more memorable. 

Players could join together in "posses" and complete area-clearing missions to rank up and gain access to unique mounts and characters. Joining up with others was further encouraged through the bonuses posses gained in experience and unlockables.

Oftentimes these posses turned into dedicated Red Dead clans, who spent time together battling other clans over territory, robbing others of stage coaches, or playing mini-games like Liar's Dice and Poker. 

The players who spent time in the world of Red Dead were loyal and encouraging to their fellow posse members. I remember my old clan leader purchasing the DLC expansion, Undead Nightmare, for me when I reached the highest rank in the game, which was the first time someone I'd met online had ever done something like that. 

Even moreso, Red Dead players were creative and unique in their style of play, often planning journeys across the map, or attempting to uncover secrets of the vast world.

One time, my posse and I spent a considerable amount of time sending a stage coach down one of the highest rivers in the game whilst as many that could stood on top of the unsubmerged roof, drifting in the water towards the eventual waterfall that sent the stagecoach tumbling down. 

The world of Red Dead was visually interesting and beautiful, with its scenic mesas and bluffs, forest mountains, and rolling desert sunsets, but the individuals who dwelled in the world were the ones who truly brought it life. 

Community #5: Halo 3 

Although there are many who may say that Halo 3's community was made up of trash-talkers, griefers, or young children throwing out your-mom-jokes, the community experience of Halo 3 on Xbox Live was an online console experience that was unprecedented for its time. 

Halo 3 introduced Forge mode, which allowed players of the game, for the first time in Halo franchise history, to create their own unique maps and game modes. The result was a vast collection of Infection style games, race tracks, competitive maps, and even in some cases, community created maps with the sole purpose of spending time in a game talking with other individuals.

Although I put enough time into Halo 3's matchmaking to reach the Brigadier rank, a considerable number of hours were spent playing Custom Games with longtime friends I'd met through the game.

Game types like Cops and robbers, Duck Hunt, Predator, Monster Truck Rally, and Fat Kid were player created game modes that were played almost every day, for extended periods of time. 

Furthermore, Bungie's creation of File Share, a place on the user's profile that could hold their own Screen Shots, game maps and modes, and film clips, allowed for the Halo 3 community to share their creations with others in an easily accessible way. 

Bungie encouraged player creation, and they used to update some of their favorite player made content on a list called "Bungie Favorites". 

Halo 3 will always hold a special place in my gaming memories, because it was one of the first games in which I met individuals who shared my interests on the level that I did, and who played the game together almost every day because we enjoyed each other's company. 

[via Halo Wikia]

Despite the game's release in 2007, it was not uncommon to see thousands of players still spending time on Halo 3 several years after its release, and even after other sequels of the game were out. To this day, if one looks hard enough, a dedicated and small community of players still passionately plays Halo 3 online.

I imagine if the servers of the game are ever shut down, we will witness another event like Halo 2, where players who stayed on the game's servers as long as they could. 

[via Reddit]

Online  gaming has allowed countless individuals to meet around the world who otherwise would not have. Becoming a part of an online community can give individuals a sense of belonging and place. These communities are often encouraging of their members -- they help others grow individually. And to have the experience of being a part of an online community is nothing short of something special and unique.

There are those who've never experienced a sense of community in online gaming -- and for those who haven't, they will never be able to understand just what it means to have this incredible and unique experience. Just like those who have had the experience fail to understand how circumstantial those experiences can be.

Coincidence can be difficult to believe in afterwards. 

[cover image courtesy of Zero Ping Heros]

]]>
1995-2016: Top 5 Conferences in the History of E3 https://www.gameskinny.com/tt26c/1995-2016-top-5-conferences-in-the-history-of-e3 https://www.gameskinny.com/tt26c/1995-2016-top-5-conferences-in-the-history-of-e3 Fri, 17 Jun 2016 05:34:49 -0400 Phil Fry

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E3 2016: Present Day Hype 
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E3 2016 has come a long way since the '96 conference of the N64.

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This year's conference is on this list for several different reasons. Admittedly, I may be letting all of the hype influence this listing -- but thus far, this year's conference has been full of exciting developments and showcases. 

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One of the dominant features that has many gamers talking is Nintendo's latest Zelda game, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the WildThe gameplay footage that we have seen so far illustrates that the game is taking a turn away from the conventional aspects of the series and placing more emphasis on exploration and player choice akin to the original NES game. Link is able to jump on command, mountains can be scaled, and environments manipulated. 

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Furthermore, the vastness of the new Hyrule has been said to be far more expansive than any previous iteration of the series, and as a long-time Zelda fan, I am hyped to play this game. The first 20 minutes of gameplay shown left me impressed and much more excited than I honestly expected to be.

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But Zelda alone is not the only hype-worthy game from this year's conference. Bethesda's Dishonored 2, which involves Emily Kaldwin as a playable character, promises to further develop the story of the Empire of the Islands. Bethesda also showcased their reboots of Prey and Quake -- and announced an HD remake of their popular Elder Scrolls game, Skyrim, which is also allowing console users access to mods for the first time. 

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Double Fine's Psychonauts VR gameplay was shown utilizing PlayStation's VR,  BioWare's Mass Effect Andromeda made an appearance, Gears of War 4, We Happy Fewand Microsoft's new project Scorpio are just touching the surface of the kinds of announcements we've seen so far, making this year's conference one of the most noteworthy in recent history. 

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Which conferences do you remember the most? What announcements left you in awe? What are some of your favorite E3 moments of all time? 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/4d71fd930f2fcd2dd322a98d37570173.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/4d71fd930f2fcd2dd322a98d37570173.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"8885","description":"
E3 2013: Long Awaited Sequels 
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E3 2013 was a conference in which many gamers saw sequels that had been, and in some cases are still, long-awaited. Perhaps one of the biggest sequels announced was Square Enix's Kingdom Hearts 3. The series had not seen a true sequel since Kingdom Hearts 2 back in 2005, 8 years prior to the 2013 conference. Countless fans rejoiced at the announcement. 

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Despite the Kingdom Hearts series containing numerous handheld games that enriched the game's story and characters, and HD remakes, many gamers had been anxious for a Kingdom Hearts 3 for the entirety of a console generation. 

\n

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[image via My Nintendo News]

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Nintendo gave the announcement date ofPikmin 3, another sequel that was long-awaited for a whole console generation. 

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DICE's reboot of Star Wars: Battlefront was first shown, another highly anticipated sequel, after the popular two games from two generations ago were left in limbo. 

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Other notable sequels of this E3 conference included: Final Fantasy XV, The Witcher 3, and Dark Souls II. 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/676967366849e3e0606cad182ec7fc53.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/676967366849e3e0606cad182ec7fc53.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"8859","description":"

[E306 - Halo 3 trailer from The Microsoft Briefing]

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E3 2006: A New Generation 
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The 2006 conference is on this list for several different reasons. Primarily, it was the conference in which the first line-up of memorable last generation console games were shown and discussed. 

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Microsoft had a particularly notable conference due to Halo 3, which was highly anticipated at the time and saw gameplay innovations like Forge mode, and the ability to save gameplay footage in Theater mode. During the game's first 24 hours of being released, more than one million players were on the game with Xbox Live. Halo 3's multiplayer was finely tuned, and the game holds a special place in my memories because of the individuals I met playing the game and the community experience that revolved around it.  

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Microsoft also showed a trailer for Lionhead's Fable 2, another anticipated sequel -- the first Fable being a notable RPG for its utilization of player choice in the story. 

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Nintendo's conference set a release date for the innovative Wii, with fantastic games like The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, and Super Mario Galaxy. At the 2004 conference, many remember the first unveil of Twilight Princess, with Shigeru Miyamoto coming on-stage wielding Master Sword and Hylian Shield to the rallying cries of fans. This Zelda game featured innovative motion controls, arguably some of the best boss fights in Zelda history, and a darker story in nature the series hadn't seen since Majora's Mask. 

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Apart from Zelda, Super Mario Galaxy featured a new take on 3D platformers, allowing Mario to traverse planet-like platforms through space in full rotation. The game also featured a fully-orchestrated soundtrack that's almost reminiscent of Studio Ghibili style sounds. 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/cb2e259b385bf55d492e36d1e2911064.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/cb2e259b385bf55d492e36d1e2911064.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"8857","description":"
E3 2001: Developments in Competitive Gaming 
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At the E3 conference of 2001, Nintendo's GameCube first made its appearance, Microsoft's initial Xbox game line-up was unveiled, and Sega's Dreamcast made its last appearance. 

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Nintendo's games included titles like: Super Smash Bros Melee, Super Mario Sunshine, Pikmin, Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem, and Luigi's Mansion. 

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Melee alone sparked the formation of competitive Smash Bros communities across the United States and Japan. The fighting game scene centered on Melee saw a history of technique developments like Wave Dashing, Dash Dancing, and the overall development of character play-styles. Player names like Mew2King, Mango, Leffen and Armada were (and are) widely known names in the Smash Bros community for their high level of play. To this day, Melee remains a highly competitive game that is featured in MLG events such as Anaheim. 

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Another major event of the 2001 conference was the Microsoft conference that featured the first installment of the critically acclaimed Halo franchise.

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[via Halo Nation]

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The FPS Halo: Combat Evolved, which gave rise to the machinima style series Red vs Blue, was innovative in the development for split-screen and multiplayer experiences, and went on to release incredibly popular sequels like Halo 2 and 3Halo 2 would be the primary feature of MLG's Pro Series in 2006, which was the first televised video game console league. 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/39289b894dc1833c8e951a81b1b668bf.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/39289b894dc1833c8e951a81b1b668bf.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"8851","description":"

[Nintendo 64 U.S. Unveiling @ E3 '96 in Los Angeles, California]

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E3 1996: 3D Interactive Environments 
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At the second ever E3 conference, there were several revolutionary developments showcased. Starting with what is arguably the most prominent of the conference, Nintendo's 64-bit and first 3D console, the N64, made its premier appearance at the '96 E3. The game shown alongside it was the widely-known Super Mario 64. The game's innovative interactive 3D environment, the N64's analog control stick, and the ability to change camera angles in-game, surely blew the minds of many gamers of the day.

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For myself and gamers of my generation, the N64 was the first console we owned (I still own mine), and became the console of our childhoods. The N64 went on to see games like Super Smash Bros, Star Fox 64, Kirby 64: the Crystal Shards, Pokemon Snap, and countless other titles that defined a new generation of gaming -- and that's not even mentioning all of the classic Rare games on the console as well. 

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Besides Nintendo, this 1996 conference saw the reveal of Square's (Now Square Enix) Final Fantasy VII, which won countless gaming awards in 1997, and has gone on to be considered one of the greatest games ever made. 

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[via Wikipedia]

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Other games featured at the second conference included Naughty Dog's Crash Bandicoot, Blizzard's StarCraft, Tomb Raider, and Capcom's Resident Evil. Pretty big year.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/l/o/g/logo-cf85b.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/l/o/g/logo-cf85b.jpg","type":"slide","id":"122458","description":"

E3 2016 is finally coming to an end. With each day of the conference new and exciting games were unveiled -- and the hype is real, especially after Nintendo's gameplay footage reveal of the highly-anticipated Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. I know that I have been thoroughly impressed with the footage I've seen of the game, and I think it's safe to say that many longtime Zelda fans and gamers are very interested in playing the game. 

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Since E3's beginning in 1995, there have been conferences in which certain games have received similar levels of hype. And in this article, we are going to look at 5 of the best E3 conferences based on the games or consoles that were revealed during that year, and often times the historical developments of gaming these specific games contributed towards. 

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This list was difficult to make, particularly because at each conference there is typically at least a few major games announced, and what I may consider a substantial reveal may not be what someone else considers significant. But in the history of E3, these are my top 5 conferences. This list is not ordered in terms of one conference holding more significance than another, but instead goes from earliest to latest conference year. 

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[image via Gaming World United]

"}]]]>
Master Chief joining the PC Master Race? https://www.gameskinny.com/ufdpw/master-chief-joining-the-pc-master-race https://www.gameskinny.com/ufdpw/master-chief-joining-the-pc-master-race Thu, 26 May 2016 06:18:32 -0400 Joey Marrazzo

PC gamers rejoice! One of the best first-person shooters might be coming back to PC, if rumors prove true. Kotaku recently released a report about the future of Xbox consoles, and inside that report was a mention of the Xbox One and PC coming together.

The reported project is called Project Helix, and it would involve big franchises like Halo making their way to PC in addition to the Xbox One console.

Kotaku stated:

"Developer sources have told us that Microsoft's new mandate is to release future games–including the flagship Halo series–on both platforms."

PC Gamers have been waiting for the Halo franchise to arrive for a long time now. Microsoft recently announced that Halo Wars 2 will come to PC, as well as the popular Forge mode found in the Halo games. Josh Holmes of 343 industries, the developer of Halo, stated that this is "just the beginning" for the popular Halo franchise on PC.

Along with Halo, other Microsoft franchises including Gears of War and Forza will make their way to a computer near you. I'm sure we will find out more information about project Helix at Microsoft's E3 press conference that takes place June 13th at 9:30 AM PST.

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Remembering the 360: The Must-Have Xbox Exclusives https://www.gameskinny.com/zo1iq/remembering-the-360-the-must-have-xbox-exclusives https://www.gameskinny.com/zo1iq/remembering-the-360-the-must-have-xbox-exclusives Thu, 21 Apr 2016 10:56:00 -0400 Ian Ilano

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Conclusion

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Like few consoles before it, the Xbox 360 managed to redefine gaming to a growing generation of gamers. It did the unfathomable — the impossible. It managed to completely change the way games were meant to be played.

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It wasn't just about the single player experience anymore. The Xbox 360 successfully connected us all to one another. It was the first console that really pioneered the multiplayer experience.

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And with it came:

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  • online achievements
  • \n
  • virtual avatars
  • \n
  • a direct messaging system
  • \n
  • and an online store
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It's a sad day indeed, when one of the generation's most defining consoles comes to an end. But it was bound to happen eventually. The 360's legacy will live on in the future consoles that follow.

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Rest in peace, Xbox 360. You'll be missed.

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Halo 3

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And now we come to the "must-have" out of all "must-haves." The epitome of everything Microsoft and Xbox 360. The game that we all know and love — Halo 3. 

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The Halo series is arguably Microsoft's most successful video game series. And it makes sense. The setting is amazing, the story is rich, and Master Chief is a total-badass as usual. Halo 3 managed to capture everything we loved about the Halo series and condense it all into one game.

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It looked great, it played amazing, and it was fun, both online and offline.
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From its memorable multiplayer experiences to its interesting and rich single player storyline, Halo 3 continues to represent everything great the Xbox 360 had to offer. 

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The beauty of Halo 3 is that we can all relate to it.

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We all have that one game that just made a huge impact on our lives. And to some, Halo 3 is that game. 

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Just looking at the picture brings back memories of the better times...

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While I did enjoy the single-player experience, playing with online was the big selling point. I remember spending countless hours just messing around in custom lobbies -- connecting with friends and new people, all over some random game. Even now, when I've played more recent and more modern online games, none are able to capture the exact feel and uniqueness present in Halo 3.

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Xbox Live servers are still up, and if anything, the multiplayer experience is reason enough to pick it up.

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And if it isn't, rest assured that you'll be following Chief in one of the most compelling stories you've experience. It ties in some of the loose questions so perfectly. It's why it's the number one exclusive.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/f/o/r/forzahorizon-screen-5df92.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/f/o/r/forzahorizon-screen-5df92.jpg","type":"slide","id":"113018","description":"

Forza Horizon 2

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Imagine a life where you're not held back by money. You can buy whatever car you want, customize it, and take it out for a spin with your friends.

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That's your life in Forza Horizon 2.

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The game is just amazing in every single way.

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  • First off, it's visually appealing. The graphics are nothing short of amazing. Every visual, every particle effect is just so crisp and nice. 
  • \n
  • Second, the level of customization is insane. You're free to do whatever you want with your car. You want to keep it tuned to stock standards? Go ahead. Do you want to create a complete eye-sore? Be my guest.
  • \n
  • Third, it's open world. You can take your car from one end of the map to the next, or you can spawn directly onto key locations on the map. The map is, quite literally, your playground.
  • \n
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I'm not a fan of the car, but the graphics are something else.

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  • Fourth and lastly, you can cruise alongside friends. It takes racing to a new level. It's all fun and games when you're racing on the track, but things get a bit more personal — and intense — when you hand-build the car yourself. 
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I spent my days grinding away on Trackmania and Need for Speed. I thought Burnout Paradise was the ultimate open-world car game, but I was wrong. I have since accepted Forza Horizon 2 as my lord and savior, the ultimate car game that is second to none. Thank you Turn 10 Studios.

\n

Thank you.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/g/e/a/gears-war-wallpaper-c6a3a.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/g/e/a/gears-war-wallpaper-c6a3a.jpg","type":"slide","id":"113019","description":"

Gears of War 3

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Now we've come to the "big boy" exclusives. First up comes a game that needs no introduction, a game centered around humanity's last struggle against a horde of mutant humanoid creatures -- Gears of War 3.

\n

Met with critical acclaim upon release, Gears of War 3 successfully wraps up one of the Xbox 360's most recognized series. The game itself brings immersive action and stunning visuals. Seriously, the game looks amazing.

\n

\n

Most games can learn a thing or two from these armor sets.

\n

And one of the most defining elements was its multiplayer. While not as huge as another noteworthy Xbox exclusive, the game's multiplayer experience was indeed fun. I remember the first time I found a Boomshot. I never put the game down after that.

\n

It's stunning graphics, immersive combat, and fun multiplayer make this one of the top exclusive titles.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/f/a/b/fable2new1-a70ab.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/f/a/b/fable2new1-a70ab.jpg","type":"slide","id":"113016","description":"

Fable 2

\n

Fable 2 is an action role-playing game developed by Lionhead Studios. Players will take control of the Hero of Bowerstone, set on a journey to prevent an evil lord from controlling the Spire. 

\n

First things first — which one is better, Fable or Fable 2? It's an age-old debate, and I'm going to end it today.

\n

Fable 2 is better, and here's why it's a must-have exclusive:

\n
    \n
  • a lot more content than the previous game. Fable 1 did not have as much content as this one did. 
  • \n
  • a better story-line. Fable 1's story was very basic and linear. If you wanted a more compelling narrative with interesting character, Fable 2 is the game you should get. 
  • \n
  • better graphics. The visuals are stunning in Fable 2. While I'm a strong advocate against using graphics as a sole reason to buy a game, you can't argue with a comparison shot.
  • \n
  • challenging. If you're more interested in challenging combat, the second one is for you.
  • \n
\n

\n

Would you look at that? It's gorgeous.

\n

Fable 2 is a game that every proud Xbox owner should have in their collection. The game will take you on a cute and whimsical storyline — the likes of which you've never seen before.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/t/a/l/tales-vesperia-xbox-360-c27e2.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/t/a/l/tales-vesperia-xbox-360-c27e2.jpg","type":"slide","id":"113013","description":"

Tales of Vesperia

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Japanese RPGs are some of the greatest games you'll ever play. The music, the gameplay, and the story-line — all of these characteristics are typical of a well-developed JRPG, and make western games pale in comparison. 

\n

Tales of Vesperia is one of the games that has it all.

\n

Developed by Namco Tales Studio, Tales of Vesperia features:

\n
    \n
  • an extremely memorable soundtrack.
  • \n
  • a refreshing combat system.
  • \n
  • and one of the best stories that I've ever experienced.
  • \n
\n

\n

The combat is very dynamic. You're not just staying in one place the whole time.

\n

One of the hardest parts about playing a Japanese RPGs is the appeal. Sometimes, it just doesn't appeal to gamers. Luckily, Tales of Vesperia does it's best to appeal to the western market. It is the first game of the series to offer complete dialogue in English, and feature elements of western RPGs. 

\n

It's one of the games every Xbox 360 owner should buy. You won't regret it.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/h/a/l/halowars-1438711884638-1280w-c38ed.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/h/a/l/halowars-1438711884638-1280w-c38ed.jpg","type":"slide","id":"113011","description":"

Halo Wars

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Because it was completely different from the series' previous installments, the announcement of Halo Wars initially worried some people. Traditionally, it would be a bit weird to find a real-time strategy game on a console. The genre just doesn't work out like it does on a PC. Surprisingly, Halo Wars did.

\n

I'd go as far as to say that Halo Wars is the best RTS game available for a console.

\n

\n

Now, that's an angle I know you haven't seen before.

\n

Ensemble Studios succeeded in creating a game that "felt at home on the console." Halo Wars had solid gameplay, responsive controls, and an entertaining story-line. The game even brings its very own, epic Halo soundtrack.

\n

It's both visually appealing and immersive, and it paints the Halo Universe in a way that we haven't seen it before. All in all, a solid choice.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/2/0/7/207359-image10-full-76e97.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/2/0/7/207359-image10-full-76e97.jpg","type":"slide","id":"113023","description":"

Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved 2

\n

It's funny. Geometry Wars was originally developed as a small project to test out the 360's controller, and now, it turned out to be one of the most addicting games available.

\n

The core concept is simple. Players control space ships and are tasked with avoiding violent polygons hurling towards them. They use the left analog stick to move, and the right to shoot. The goal is to survive for as long as you possibly can.

\n

However, it's not the concept that makes this game stand apart from others, it's how polished it is. Geometry Wars was a decent title, but Bizarre Creations improved all the right areas in Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved 2.

\n

\n

Take that you filthy abhorrent shapes!

\n
    \n
  • The movement and controls felt so fluid. It just felt "right" in your hands.
  • \n
  • The camera followed you around perfectly. For a game that's so fast-paced and intense, camera placement is crucial.
  • \n
  • The development team included a whole array of game modes. This is for players, like me, who ever got bored of the standard game mode. There was a whopping selection to choose from.
  • \n
\n

Currently, Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved 2 holds the title as "The Best Xbox Live Arcade Game," and while I'm not going to argue with that, I think a better — and more fitting title — would be, the "Best Stress Reliever."

\n

 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/2/0/1/20110218011358172637-604e1.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/2/0/1/20110218011358172637-604e1.jpg","type":"slide","id":"113010","description":"

Viva Piñata

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Do not be fooled by its childish visuals. Though it initially looks like it caters specifically to kids, Viva Piñata can be a great and memorable experience if you're willing to give it a try.

\n

The game starts with you constructing a farm on an island. As you develop and improve your farm, you soon find the island's fluffy inhabitants flocking to you. The goal of the game is simple: collect as many pinatas as you can. 

\n
Essentially, it's Neko Atsume: Cat Collector on steroids.
\n

One of the best things about this game is the gameplay. It's not an ordinary simulator. You have to cater and watch over the piñatas who come to your farm. They can fight, they can get angry, and some piñatas are so dang picky that obtaining them is near impossible. 

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And the best part about it?
\n

There are over 70 unique piñatas to discover. Their uniqueness and individuality is so refreshing that it's incredibly satisfying when you do discover one. People of all ages can enjoy collecting them.

\n

Viva Pinata

\n

A great person once said, "It's so fluffy, I just might die."

\n

Viva Piñata stands as one of those, "hit or miss" type of games. Some will enjoy it, some won't. But it's worth picking up if you ever get the chance. You may be kidding yourself from a great experience otherwise.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/c/a/s/castle-crashers00-c90b6.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/c/a/s/castle-crashers00-c90b6.jpg","type":"slide","id":"113009","description":"

Castle Crashers

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What's a game driven only by the primal desire to hack and slash your way through enemies? A game void of meaningful content and dialogue, but filled to the brim with action-packed adventures and comical sword-play?

\n

Well, the most appropriate answer to that question would be Castle Crashers.

\n
It's nothing short of the ultimate "beat 'em up."
\n

Created by Dan Paladin and Tom Fulp, Castle Crashers closely resembles a modernized 2D arcade game.

\n

If you're looking for a game to kill some time, look no further than this.

\n

Castle Crashers

\n

The environment isn't the only thing visually appealing, look at that monster!

\n

There's no dialogue, and there's barely even a story. Yet still, the action is enough to keep your attention for a good while. Mindless killing alongside friends and family? Come on, what's not to love about that?

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/f/i/g/fight-930x52400-08d0f.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/f/i/g/fight-930x52400-08d0f.jpg","type":"slide","id":"113014","description":"

Jade Empire

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When you ask someone to name a game made by BioWare, they'll typically jump out and recite one of the usual big three: Knights of the Old Republic, Mass Effect, or Dragon Age. Very few will mention titles like Neverwinter Nights or Baldur's Gate, and even fewer are familiar with Jade Empirea game that I feel deserves more recognition than it was given.

\n

Released in 2005, Jade Empire is a role-playing game that offers players a glimpse into the eastern world. The game itself takes place in ancient China, and it features:

\n
    \n
  • a compelling narrative.
  • \n
  • an interesting and memorable cast of companions.
  • \n
  • and a fun, albeit clunky, combat system.
  • \n
\n

\n

For its time, the game has aged pretty well.

\n

If you're a fan of role-playing games,  it's worth going back and giving Jade Empire a shot. Just don't set your expectations too high. In the end,  it still has its flaws. Regardless, I consider it a classic RPG, definitely worthy enough to stand alongside BioWare's other great works.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/x/b/o/xbox-360-logo-81383.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/x/b/o/xbox-360-logo-81383.jpg","type":"slide","id":"113008","description":"

Today is a huge moment for all of us.

\n

Microsoft just announced their plans to retire the Xbox 360. As of now, support for Xbox Live services and servers will continue, but the production of additional console units will come to a permanent stop.

\n

It's a bit sad. Last November marked the console's ten year anniversary, and since it was released, it has had a huge impact on gamers everywhere. As a tribute to the console's long and enduring legacy, I have compiled a list of the top Xbox exclusives that I have personally enjoyed. The list will be composed of some of the best games the console has to offer.

\n

So, if you're looking to pick up an Xbox 360 while supplies last, consider the following titles your "top priority" to play on it. 

"}]]]>
We put 15 of the most iconic game characters through that dumb What-Dog site. You're welcome. https://www.gameskinny.com/1k9b2/we-put-15-of-the-most-iconic-game-characters-through-that-dumb-what-dog-site-youre-welcome https://www.gameskinny.com/1k9b2/we-put-15-of-the-most-iconic-game-characters-through-that-dumb-what-dog-site-youre-welcome Fri, 12 Feb 2016 09:56:48 -0500 Ty Arthur

The Internet just discovered a whole new way to waste time with Microsoft's What-Dog site, which lets you determine what kind of dog any given person would be just by uploading a photo.

You should have guessed by now we already tried this out with every video game hero and villain we could think of, and it is eerie how spot-on some of these are.

The face recognition sadly isn't perfect, and I was pretty disappointed it couldn't find anything for either Mario (and yeah, I tried the live action version) or Leisure Suit Larry, but then again perhaps that's for the best...

"Soap" Mactavish

Would you send your Labrador Retriever to plant some claymores by the door?

Sephiroth

I'm never going to look at that beautiful mane of silver hair the same way again...

Cortana

Do you think she'd agree with the assessment?

Kefka

I can't stop laughing at this one!

Kratos

If only it had said "loves his family."

Lara Croft

The many, many, many mercenaries I killed in the Tomb Raider reboot would likely agree!

Link

I'm now going to always see Link with a dumb grin and his tongue hanging out, but "surprisingly strong body for its size" is so accurate!

Marcus Fenix

Yep, I can see it. He doesn't take kindly to orders either.

The Arbiter

Well, they nailed the neck and body type!

Max

Somehow I feel like this describes Max from Life Is Strange a lot more than Kefka!

Scorpion

Who's a cute little Scorpion? Yes you are, yes you are!

Solid Snake

I lost it entirely at "intense stares."

Tiny Tina

Definitely vocal, energetic, and eager to prey on small animals... or bandits, whatevs.

Elizabeth

That description is amazingly accurate for the character, even if the image doesn't quite match.

Captain Price

Could you ask for a better jogging partner through a snowy base in Siberia or a dusty airplane graveyard?

Let us know what hilarious combinations you come up with you give What-Dog a try!

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Everything you need to know about Halo universe https://www.gameskinny.com/jx7iu/everything-you-need-to-know-about-halo-universe https://www.gameskinny.com/jx7iu/everything-you-need-to-know-about-halo-universe Sat, 26 Sep 2015 12:22:35 -0400 Sergey_3847

The biggest exclusive for Xbox One is coming out on October 27, 2015 – Halo 5: Guardians. This is the fifth installment in the main series of the Halo games, which began its world domination in 2001. Throughout the years, the universe of Halo has been growing more and more, and it's gotten to the point that if you’ve missed a game or two, it can be pretty hard to put all the pieces back together. Some people have never even played the previous installments, but do want to try Guardians out.

The best case scenario would be to play through all the games in the beloved franchise and gain full personal insight into the story and the characters. But who has time for that? That’s why I'm giving you a brief analysis of the key concepts and events of the Halo universe.

After reading this guide, you will be ready for the events of the upcoming Halo 5 game. However, if you still plan on playing some of the previous games, be prepared for the spoilers. Now, let’s begin from the very basics.

Introduction

The events of Halo take place in the twenty-sixth century. In this far future, mankind continues to explore near-Earth space and begins the process of colonization of other planets.

The first contact with extraterrestrial life forms happens in the year 2525, and the aliens turn out to be extremely hostile creatures. This event unleashes the main conflict, which involves the principal aggressor - the Covenant, a conglomerate of alien races. The only force capable of resisting the Covenant is a team of super-soldiers, known as the SPARTANs, which includes the protagonist of the series - Master Chief.

The Precursors and the Forerunners

First came the Precursors, then the Forerunners. These were the representatives of the ancient races that perished hundreds of thousands of years ago. There isn’t much information about the Precursors, except that they were the creators of all living things, including people. The Forerunners, on the other hand, have a much richer mythology. It is believed that the Forerunners were the ones who overthrew and almost completely destroyed their creators. According to one version, the creators personally acknowledged the Forerunners as a mistake, which eventually led to a riot.

“The Forerunners were a wise, highly intelligent, noble beings and with a belief in justice, in peace, they bravely faced the adversary. They sought to sterilize it.” - Cortana on the Forerunners

Whatever it was, the Forerunners became the strongest and most advanced race in the universe, who took the responsibility to protect other, weaker species.

The Flood (The Parasite)

“One single Flood spore can destroy a species.” - Rtas 'Vadum, Halo 3.

It wasn’t a spontaneous natural phenomenon, although it was just as destructive. An invasion of parasites - Inferi redivivus, was the punishment afflicted on the Forerunners by those remaining few of their creators. The Forerunners had been fighting this plague for three hundred years, but the harder they tried to destroy it, the more parasites spawned from the spores, driven by only one instinct - to infect and devour everything that is sentient.

The Halos

The Forerunners had no choice, and they put all their efforts into creating biological weapons – the Halos (Halo Array, Sacred Rings). This weapon could destroy all of life within the galaxy - that was the only way out, destroying the only source of Flood’s nutrition.

“The only way to stop the Flood is to starve them to death.” - Cortana to John 117 and 343 Guilty Spark.

It’s interesting that the inner surface of the rings was suitable for life. With the help of terraforming, it became possible to create favorable conditions for the flora and fauna to further explore the impact of the Flood on different organisms.

Initially, eighteen rings with a diameter of 8,000 kilometers each were created on an installation facility called The Great Ark – the only place that was protected from the impact of the Halos. Subsequently, some Halos were destroyed or simply lost. However, the remaining seven were enough to put an end to the Flood, and unavoidably, to other life forms in the galaxy, as well.

“Halo doesn't kill Flood. It kills their food. Humans, Covenant, whatever. We're all equally edible. The only way to stop the Flood is to starve them to death. And that's exactly what Halo is designed to do: wipe the galaxy clean of all sentient life.” - Cortana

After activating the Halos, the galaxy was seeded with life once again, and the remnants of the Flood disappeared for many years. This ends the history of the Forerunners and starts a new cycle.

The Covenant

Hundreds of thousands of years later, another group of beings boldly declared itself as the supreme one - the Covenant, a union of many races from different parts of the universe. Each species occupied a certain place within the empire, depending on its abilities.

With all its diversity, the Covenant, like many other nations, was united by one faith. The Forerunners disappeared, leaving almost no traces behind, except a couple of artifacts. Those few relics discovered by the Covenant made its people believe in its supremacy. Since then, they’ve been worshipping the Forerunners like gods, and thinking that Halos were the gates to immortality - the Great Journey, which, of course, was a big mistake.

“None will be left behind when our Great Journey begins! That is the Prophet's age-old promise. And it shall be fulfilled!” - The Prophet of Regret

The Covenant, unlike the Forerunners, developed very slowly and produced most of its weapons and equipment in accordance with the “messages of the gods" and used their processing technology. Nevertheless, they managed to learn enough to be able to build spaceships, military transport, plasma beams, and chemical weapons.

The Conflict

During the search for the new artifacts, the Covenant had its first contact with people, and the subsequent war began. The next relic to be found on the human colonized planet Harvest clarified the true meaning behind the messages of the Forerunners, which said that their true heirs were humans and not the Covenant.

So, the Supreme Council of the Covenant had no choice but to declare humanity as heretics and start the war with them. This war would last for more than thirty years.

“At this point in time, the Covenant is at its most evil. They are hell-bent on the destruction of humanity, on scouring us from the universe.” - Graeme Devine, Lead Writer, formerly Lead Developer

The SPARTANs

Technologically, the Covenant was far ahead of humanity, so people had to create and improve their own weapon base. This war would have ended quickly enough if humans didn't develop their first batch of super-soldiers – the SPARTANs, physically perfect and cybernetically modified fighters.

Dr. Catherine Halsey was considered the creator of the SPARTANs, including the training program and modification of MJOLNIR, the super advanced exoskeleton to which the SPARTANs owe most of their abilities. Subsequent generations of SPARTANs developed without the participation of Dr. Halsey.

“My SPARTANs are Humanity's next step - our destiny as a species.”

- Catherine Halsey, describing the SPARTANs to an ONI interrogator

Initially, the SPARTANs headed peacekeeping missions, in particular missions to crush the rebellion against the unified government of the Earth. Fortunately or unfortunately, they had to deal with another kind of threat.

Master Chief

“He is neither the smartest, nor the fastest, nor the strongest of the Spartans. But he is the bravest, and quite possibly the luckiest. And in my opinion, he is the best.” - Dr. Catherine Halsey to Cortana

The most famous SPARTAN soldier is Master Chief, also known as John-117. Generally, super-soldiers don’t recognize the titles and choose one leader among their peers. However, the authority of Master Chief was so great that he was recognized as the Chief Petty Officer of all the SPARTANs.

The Covenant simply called him "Demon." Due to his efforts, many of their attacks were repelled, the Halo rings were deactivated, and the truce was established. The Covenant subsequently collapsed and some of its members teamed up with humans. The rest of the defeated Covenant races formed the Covenant Remnant and continued to fight.

Cortana

Before gaining popularity as an AI assistant in the new operating system from Microsoft, Cortana was an assistant to Master Chief. Dr. Halsey created Cortana for one of the first operations of the SPARTANs. They needed to hack the AI and gain data analysis. However, Cortana turned out to be much more than that.

In the Halo universe, in order to create an AI, a dead person’s brain was usually used. But in the case of Cortana, Dr. Halsey created a copy of her own brain. One day, studying the ins and outs of the SPARTANs' training program, Cortana swore to defend the Master Chief at any cost - even if she couldn’t last longer than seven years, the life cycle of the normal AI.

“They let me pick. Did I ever tell you that? Choose whichever Spartan I wanted. You know me. I did my research. Watched as you became the soldier we needed you to be. Like the others, you were strong and swift and brave. A natural leader. But you had something they didn't. Something no one saw, but me. Can you guess...? Luck.” -Cortana

The Prometheans

“They're Forerunner robots. Hard light in battle armor. What can they offer us? Nothing but trouble, doctor. They're simply killing machines.”

- SPARTAN Gabriel Thorne.

In Halo 4, we get to fight the new breed of enemies - the Prometheans. They once served as warrior-servants for the Forerunners. In order to avoid the destructive force of the Halos, they turned themselves into digital beings, thus being able to disintegrate into particles. Together with their lord Didact, they disappeared into the primary fortress world - Requiem.

After the defeat of Didact, the Prometheans joined the Covenant Remnant and its leader - Jul 'Mdama. This, as well as the uncertain fate of Master Chief and Dr. Halsey, who was forced to join the Covenant, is where the story picks up in Halo 5: Guardians.

]]>
7 of the most beautiful soundtracks in Video Games https://www.gameskinny.com/qv6s7/7-of-the-most-beautiful-soundtracks-in-video-games https://www.gameskinny.com/qv6s7/7-of-the-most-beautiful-soundtracks-in-video-games Wed, 09 Sep 2015 02:30:01 -0400 shox_reboot

I don't know about you, but half my iPhone's music library has about 10GB worth of music that has come straight from video games.

Games have come a long way from just being something you do for fun. We now have the opportunity to play them for the stories they tell us, more like an interactive movie in a sense. And like movies, games have started using everything they have in their disposal to convey the emotions it wants us to feel.

Apart from the cinema-quality cut scenes we've been getting treated to over the past few years, gaming companies have been setting aside a big budget in order to snag the best music composers out there to make soundtracks that echo the tone and emotion their games are looking to convey.

We can always find faults in gameplay, plot holes in storylines, flaws in characters and other things that can turn us off. But music has never been something to find fault in.  

Halo 3 OST - Never Forget (Martin O'Donnell)

Halo is a favorite for many. And it's not surprising. 

It's a game that really brought a community together. Friends were made through this, so many of us can remember the nights we've spent playing split screen or organizing massive LAN parties for this alone. 

We can't forget Master Chief's story either. But this particular soundtrack feels more like a love letter to the fans of the series. The nostalgia we get just by listening to this beautiful piece is enough to keep remembering the reasons why Halo will always be up there as one of the greatest FPS's of our time. 

Metal Gear Solid 3: Way to Fall (Starsailor) 

This is not a song made specifically for the game, but in no way is it any less fitting. 

The Boss was always a pseudo-parent figure to Snake (Big Boss). The ending of the game, the tone it carries is matched perfectly by this song, fitting together like pieces of a puzzle so perfectly that it's difficult not to think the song was made for this game.

Or if the game was made based on the song. 

Assassin's Creed II: Ezio's Family (Jesper Kyd) 

I count Assassin's Creed II as the best in the series. 

This beautiful piece probably contributes a lot to why I think that. With Ezio's father and brother's tragic deaths setting him on the path for revenge, ultimately making the master assassin we know Ezio Auditore da Firenze to be, this melancholic soundtrack manages to capture the emotions perfectly.

Despite the Assassin's Creed series falling from grace since it's initial few releases, the soundtracks have always exceeded expectations. For that, here are a few honorable mentions;

Assassin's Creed III: Aphelion (Jesper Kyd)

Assassin's Creed IV: The Ends of the Earth (Brian Tyler) 


Dishonored: Honor For All (John Licht and Daniel Licht)

This song was written specifically as a reward for players who finished Dishonored.

The heavy emphasis on the violin fits the theme of 19th Century London perfectly, and the overall tone of the piece serves as a fitting representation for Corvo Attano's journey you undertake throughout the course of this game. 

You can ask for no more fitting a reward than this masterpiece. 

Final Fantasy VII Crisis Core: The Price of Freedom (Takeharu Ishimoto)

Ah Crisis Core. One of the gems from the PSP age. 

This beautiful piece is a fitting send off to Zack Fair, the game's main protagonist. The title itself is an indicator to the price he paid for wishing to break free of Shinra's clutches and giving Cloud Strife his freedom. 

If you haven't played this game yet, you're doing yourself a disservice. More so if you are a fan of Final Fantasy VII. Zack is a character everyone should be familiar with. The price he paid should not be forgotten. 

Elder Scrolls Online: Beauty of Dawn (Malukah) 

Let's be honest, Elder Scrolls Online was not as good as everyone thought it would be. But can a song make up for the downsides of a game? 

Normally, no. But this piece does a great job in coming close. I prefer to just think of it as something composed for Skyrim instead. 

Either way, even if you don't like ESO, get the soundtrack. You'll be saving money while getting some of the best, if not the best parts of this game: The soundtracks. 

Far Cry 3: I'm Sorry (Brian Tyler) 

Did I ever tell you what the definition of insanity is? - Vaas Montenegro

Vaas is one of the most iconic characters to ever grace a video game. As such he deserves something to remember him by. For me, it's this soundtrack. 

That's it for now! What are your favorite tracks from video games? Share below so we may all experience them!

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12 Incredible nerdom and video game-inspired gingerbread houses https://www.gameskinny.com/tvl9m/12-incredible-nerdom-and-video-game-inspired-gingerbread-houses https://www.gameskinny.com/tvl9m/12-incredible-nerdom-and-video-game-inspired-gingerbread-houses Wed, 16 Sep 2015 06:37:06 -0400 Khadija Dukes

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Gingerbread making is not only a fun and tasty way to play with food, but it also allows people to express their creativity and their passions or interests. 

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These twelve sculptures are a beautiful homage to the gaming community and they show that gingerbread making is just as artistic and enjoyable as cake making.

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What do you think of these gingerbread houses? Will you be making any this holiday season?

"},{"image":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/0/a/4/0a42a71fcbb9e97478e38cf0925178e7.jpg","thumb":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/0/a/4/tiny_0a42a71fcbb9e97478e38cf0925178e7.jpg","type":"slide","id":"81507","description":"

Star Wars

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This unbelievable gingerbread sculpture is an astonishing replica of the Millennium Falcon. The creation was on display at the Inn at Laurel Point as part of Canada's National Gingerbread showcase in 2012. The piece is entirely edible and features a miniature Chewbacca and Han Solo. It is decorated with red, white and blue icing and sits atop a bead of shredded coconut. Candy canes and chocolate adorn the rest of the creation.

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The Millennium Falcon is a modified YT-1300 light freighter spacecraft commanded by the smuggler Han Solo and the Wookie Chewbacca.

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Check out more pics here.

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Mario

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The final Mario-inspired gingerbread house was created by Darcy from The Infinite Yums for an auction at the Festival of the Trees. It features many of the same characters and symbols from the previous Mario-themed houses, with the exception of Wario, Waluigi, and Boo. This cute house and its characters are ensconced and composed of colored fondant. 

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Check out more pics here.

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Mass Effect

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This colossal piece of gingerbread is a spectacular rendition of the Mass Effect harbinger. The statuesque construction was on display at the EXP Restaurant and Bar in Vancouver. Created by the Catalyst as a clone of the Leviathans, Harbinger is a Reaper that oversees Collectors' operations. Any unit taken over by it is instantly killed and its body will levitate and glow, gaining increased health and strength. 

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Check out more pics here.

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Super Mario

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This exquisite gingerbread creation is yet another beautiful depiction of Mario in a winter wonderland themed game for the Nintendo DS. This animated and comprehensive design features multi-colored candy ribbons and edible versions of re-occurring and well-known Super Mario characters and symbols, including Princess Peach, Bowser, Toad, Luigi, Yoshi, and Mario himself. Luigi, Yoshi, and Toad can be seen throwing snowballs at Bowser who is in the midst of throwing a massive snowball. Mario beholds a star while Princess Peach looks on. Although this holiday version of Super Mario does not exist, one can still appreciate the dedication and creativity put into this masterpiece.

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Check out more pics here.

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Game of Thrones

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This ornate gingerbread creation is a colorful representation of the highly coveted Iron Throne. This pretty design features purple and blue icing and tons of individually made miniature swords. Some of the swords are even decorated in edible beads. Created by Aegon I Targaryen, the Iron Throne is the seat of the Lord of the Seven Kingdoms. The seat resides in the Red Keep's throne room, only to be sat upon by the Hand of the King in the King's absence.

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Check out more pics here.

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Mario

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This inventive and detailed gingerbread version of Bowser's castle may not be the first of many Mario-themed gingerbread houses, but it is one of the most interesting. Created by a Norwegian Reddit-user's family, this presentation features a gingerbread house ensconced in fondant. Complete with fondant Mario characters and Mario being chased by a bomb-omb, this gingerbread house is very entertaining. This action-filled scene even has little snowmen and an 8-bit coin.

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Bowser's Castle functions as a base for the Koopa King and his Koopa Troops. Mario must frequently save Princess Peach from Bowser who keeps her locked up in his castle. 

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Check out more pics here.

"},{"image":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/3/2/7/3275ab3917580d5cee690e45d805d5af.jpg","thumb":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/3/2/7/tiny_3275ab3917580d5cee690e45d805d5af.jpg","type":"slide","id":"81498","description":"

Star Wars

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This frosty confection is an inspired take on the Star Wars All Terrain Armored Transport (AT-AT). This pretty design was created by a Flickr user and features intricate designs made with pastel pink, baby blue, white, black, gray, and gold icing. The statuesque creation displays dots, stripes, and flower designs.

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AT-AT Walkers are vehicles that travel through the Star Wars landscape on mechanical legs. They are mainly used by the Old Republic and the Galactic Empire.

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Check out more pics here.

"},{"image":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/2/3/3/2334f6f23cc54fe325b099b7a256b0b7.jpg","thumb":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/2/3/3/tiny_2334f6f23cc54fe325b099b7a256b0b7.jpg","type":"slide","id":"81497","description":"

Star Trek

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This amazing, mid-air gingerbread imitation of Star Trek's Starship Enterprise was made by Blackmarket Bakery in California. The captivating mid-action piece is complete with the NCC-1701 registry code and a candy coated tractor beam. The ship is decorated with red, white, blue, and black icing. The piece is also adorned with miniature candy canes, marshmallows, hard peppermints, and soft peppermints.

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The USS Enterprise is the main starship in the Star Trek universe. Its mission is "to explore strange new worlds; to seek out new life and new civilizations; to boldly go where no man has gone before."

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Check out more pics here.

"},{"image":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/f/b/d/fbd86faa163dda0fca3135cc4ff46d5d.jpg","thumb":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/f/b/d/tiny_fbd86faa163dda0fca3135cc4ff46d5d.jpg","type":"slide","id":"81496","description":"

Halo

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This tasty looking display of gingerbread is a beautiful representation of the Forward Unto Dawn ship from Halo. The creative concoction was made by a gamer for an IGN gingerbread making competition. The sizable ship is complete with the words 'forward unto dawn' and a United Nations Space Command symbol. The ship is comprised of gingerbread, pretzel sticks, and Nutty bars and is held together with white icing. Master Chief is found in the Forward Unto Dawn ship at the end of Halo 3 and in Halo 4. The ship was eventually cut in half with Master Chief's half left to drift towards a world called Requiem. 

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Check out more pics here.

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Lord of the Rings

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This magnificent tower of gingerbread is a stunning replica of the tower of Barad-dûr from the Lord of the Rings. The delectable creation was crafted by two Finnish students who used almost 14 pounds of gingerbread to create this masterpiece. The tower is held together with chocolate and is complete with Sauron's light shining from atop the tower. Barad-dûr, also known as the Dark Tower, was ruled by Sauron, the Dark Lord. The Eye of Sauron shone from the highest tower and kept watch over all of Middle Earth.

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Check out more pics here.

"},{"image":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/7/c/d/7cd42c52575688a905e56da09ba36310.jpg","thumb":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/7/c/d/tiny_7cd42c52575688a905e56da09ba36310.jpg","type":"slide","id":"81502","description":"

World of Warcraft

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This breathtaking gingerbread monument is a shocking model of Deathwing destroying Stormwind City. A woman from Sweden created this beauty for a Starcraft II holiday dessert contest. Deathwing is composed of an orange and clove-flavored chocolate cake and caramelized sugar wings. Stormwind City is composed of gingerbread that is being engulfed by caramelized sugar flames.

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Deathwing the Destroyer was one of the five Dragon Aspects. He eventually corrupted the black Dragon Aspect and scorched the capital of Stormwind following the Second War. 

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Check out more pics here.

"},{"image":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/5/a/6/5a64cf0cc41ae5ec965dd5d037a1df48.png","thumb":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/5/a/6/tiny_5a64cf0cc41ae5ec965dd5d037a1df48.png","type":"slide","id":"81509","description":"

Portal

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This simple yet futuristic confection is a hypnotic interpretation of the Aperture Science computer aided enrichment center. The gingerbread presentation features a gingerbread portal cube and gingerbread people. The display also features blue and pink candy portals surrounded by blue and pink royal icing.

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The Aperture Science testing facility is where the character Chell must solve several puzzles by using the portal device to transport herself and objects. Upon successful completion, the character will receive cake.

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Check out more pics here.

"},{"image":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/4/e/2/4e2ee4f8a9249dd882696090af5aff2b.jpg","thumb":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/4/e/2/tiny_4e2ee4f8a9249dd882696090af5aff2b.jpg","type":"slide","id":"83754","description":"

Cake decorators and pastry chefs have long been revered for their artistry and attention to detail. The things these bakers can do with cake knows no bounds. However, one form of food artistry that has been vastly overlooked and severely underrated is the art of making gingerbread houses.

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Constructing houses and other structures out of gingerbread is just as time consuming and methodical as baking and decorating a cake. However, due to the texture and consistency of gingerbread, it provides for a sturdier base than soft, malleable cake.

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Competitions are even dedicated to the creation of these masterpieces. Much love and hard work goes into these confections and it is about time these pieces of art are recognized.

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Here are some of the most amazing gingerbread houses that are not only incredible due to their size, detail and accuracy, but also due to their being inspired by the most beloved nerdoms and video games.

"}]]]>
Study Shows Unskilled Players More Likely to Be Sexist https://www.gameskinny.com/nfwva/study-shows-unskilled-players-more-likely-to-be-sexist https://www.gameskinny.com/nfwva/study-shows-unskilled-players-more-likely-to-be-sexist Sat, 18 Jul 2015 15:48:29 -0400 K.W. Colyard

According to new data, unskilled male gamers are more likely to become hostile toward female players. The study, titled "Insights into Sexism: Male Status and Performance Moderates Female-Directed Hostile and Amicable Behavior," was conducted by researchers from the University of New South Wales and Miami University, and published in the journal PLOS ONE.

Using Halo 3 to look at interactions between the sexes in team-based competitive gaming, researchers found that unskilled male players who performed poorly in a match were more likely to berate their female teammates, while acting submissively toward more skilled male players. From the abstract:

We show that lower-skilled players were more hostile towards a female-voiced teammate, especially when performing poorly. ... This difference in gender-directed behaviour became more extreme with poorer focal-player performance. We suggest that low-status males increase female-directed hostility to minimize the loss of status as a consequence of hierarchical reconfiguration resulting from the entrance of a woman into the competitive arena.

The study's participants were all anonymous and unaware that they were being observed, thanks to Xbox Live's policies allowing game footage and chat audio to be recorded at any time. Because of its complete anonymity, "Insights into Sexism" is an unbiased look at gender dynamics in the gaming world, showing the harassment female players endure at the hands of insecure men.

Although the men who engage in these harmful behaviors are 100% accountable for their attitudes and actions, hostility toward women - particularly from underachieving men - is a sociocultural problem created by the gendered expectation that men should dominate women in finance, academia, and sport, among other arenas. For more information on the subject, check out Dr. Nerdlove's blog post on toxic masculinity in the geek world.

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Why More Games Need A Built-In Editor Like GTA 5's https://www.gameskinny.com/turxp/why-more-games-need-a-built-in-editor-like-gta-5s https://www.gameskinny.com/turxp/why-more-games-need-a-built-in-editor-like-gta-5s Thu, 23 Apr 2015 19:04:51 -0400 Pierre Fouquet

Grand Theft Auto 5 released on the 14th April 2015 for PC, after being pushed back several times the PC version came the Rockstar Editor. This is a built-in video editing suite that allows you to set camera angles, cut, export and everything else you would expect from an editing program. It works by creating a 3D 'bubble' around the player, within this is where you can move the free camera.

Camera angles only work in third person, first person locks the recording to that view. Other recording programs simply record what you see and give you limited cutting and colour tools (e.g. brightness and contrast).

After playing around with the GTA 5 editor, it made me realize that I want an editor with that level of detail in more games, if not all games.

Some platforms have clip editors built into them

...the PS4 makes it much easier to record gameplay.

The Xbox One has the Upload Studio and Game DVR apps, the latter allows you to record footage, and the former allows you to manipulate it. However there are no camera angle changes, and you can only stitch together a limited amount of clips. In the Upload Studio you can either use one clip and simply cut it, you can use a picture-in-picture mode to run two clips simultaneously (one of the clips can be from the Kinect). And then it gets strange, as you can then string together 3 or 5 clips, and exactly that many; no more, no less. Game DVR allows for a maximum of 5 minutes recording time. You can either record the preceding 30 or 45 seconds or 1, 3 or 5 minutes, or you can choose to record any future gameplay for up to 5 minutes at a time.

The PS4 has the SHAREfactory and Share button. With the share button you can record up to 15 minutes of gameplay; the PS4 makes it much easier to record gameplay. On the editing side there are not as many restrictions as on the Xbox One, you can have plenty enough clips to edit a good length video, in fact I have not yet found a clip limit beyond what can be stored on the hard drive.

As with the Xbox One app, you can also have a picture-in-picture mode, but in addition you can add your own music as well as a set of more interesting transitions.

The PS4 offering is the closest video editor to the Rockstar Editor for on-console solutions, all it lacks is the 3D bubble mechanic to allow for the camera angles.

Who thinks it would be possible for games to allow for the built-in recording and editing suites on consoles to tap into the games and record a 3D bubble? Of course, this would mean the game needs to be open to this from the start, and somehow interact with the console. I guess it's a technical hurdle that may now be able to feasible with the current generation.

Games with clip cutting from the past

GTA 4 on PC also had a fairly substantial editor, it was a great first step towards what we now see in GTA 5, but it was not the first. The earliest game I can remember to have an editor, which allowed you to change camera angles, was Driver on the PS1 with the Director Mode.

Come to think of it I think it may have been the first game to have this type of feature. Director Mode also featured in the newer Driver: San Fransisco. The camera angles are limited as you can only select from preset angles, and the editor is not quite as intuitive as the Rockstar Editor.

Having said that the Rockstar Editor is far more powerful than anything I've seen before. There are some great car chases that came out of the Driver Director Mode, some remind me heavily of '80s cop show and action movie chases, so having a harder to use or more basic tools doesn't stop it being used for some great stuff.

Halo 3 was the first in the Halo series to feature the Theater mode; the game automatically recorded all your gameplay from multiplayer which you could then scrub through and make a video from. To my memory, Halo 3 was also the first game to feature a free camera within a video recording context. It helped boost Rooster Teeth's Red vs. Blue from something that was very popular to one of the flagship web shows, even with such a simple editor as seen in Halo 3, the free camera gave the series a much more professional and cinematic feel.

So why do more games need a video editor?

All of the built-in video editing tools I just mentioned are steps towards what is now possible in GTA 5's Rockstar Editor, but the one thing they are missing is that all important bubble. Halo brought the free camera, Driver brought the camera angles, the speed changing, and the character tracking. The console options show that a reasonably powerful video editing tool can be brought to console, be very user-friendly and that the consoles themselves are powerful enough to handle it.

That now brings me to my reasons:

1. Creativity

Many gamers are creative. I think this is part of being a gamer, creatively thinking about how to tackle the situation put in front of you. Now you can create your very own short videos, even create an entire film using your favorite game. Imagine creating a short video about your Skyrim travels or your epic voyage across America in The Crew, all with tools available in-game.

2. Free promotion

Developers will no longer need to make 150 trailers about their game, as this is a massive waste of time and money, why not let the game speak for itself? Players could create videos that basically act as free advertising for the game. Sales can happen at any time, they don't all need to happen in the first week.

3. Filmic play throughs

Imagine instead of simply watching a 10-minute playthrough wouldn't it be much more awesome to watch a 10-minute action movie? My answer is yes!

4. It's just fun

For me, it's just a double win, I get to play games, which I love doing. Then I also get to let my creative side out and make my terrible game playing skills look amazing. I can then promptly share that with the world.

5. Glitches can look epic

Have you ever had one of those glitches where you just wished you could get a better angle of it? Well... now you can, and you would also be able to slow it down, and add fancy effects to it.

Too complicated?
Maybe I just have Rockstar Editor love, I may have just fallen for an impossible love...

 Maybe I just have Rockstar Editor love, I may have just fallen for an impossible love which only GTA 5 can realise. It might be too much of a technical hurdle to pull off, and may take too much time to implement. But how amazing would it be if we lived in a gaming world where all of the games had their own editors? Imagine the longevity that a game could reach.

Mods give Bethesda games exceptionally long lives, and the current way to keep people playing it to have an XP based multiplayer system, but which brings more stories and keeps people playing longer? I would say it's the user-created content which gives games longer lives than XP systems. Developers make games, but communities keep them alive. Why not help communities grow by giving them tools to not only create mods, but then create professional looking trailers for those mods? Or maybe there was just a cool story a gamer wanted to share.

Would you like to see tools of this sort in more games? Tell me about it in the comments below. 

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The Top 10 Halo Easter Eggs You Probably Missed https://www.gameskinny.com/6arjf/the-top-10-halo-easter-eggs-you-probably-missed https://www.gameskinny.com/6arjf/the-top-10-halo-easter-eggs-you-probably-missed Sun, 05 Apr 2015 17:33:28 -0400 Elijah Beahm

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Tribute Room -- Halo: Reach

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It's rare for a franchise to have as devoted a fanbase as Halo has, so it is fitting that when Bungie had to let go of the reigns of the franchise, they left a passionate goodbye to their fans in the form of this Easter Egg. Not only does it feature the third Siege of Madrigal Easter Egg, but it is a room full of terminals recording and recognizing the greatest fan efforts, from fan series like Red vs. Blue to charities like Fight the Flood.

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The room is also plastered with images from past entries and plenty of in-jokes. Concept art for Reach's protagonists Noble Team can even be found. If you're a big fan of Halo and haven't heard of this Easter Egg yet, I sincerely advise watching the video above and maybe even checking out the Easter Egg yourself.

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Like the Easter Eggs we found? Want to see more? Have you found any we missed? Let us know in the comments below!

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/1cab9fadff4a1bcdc0bc61d8bea6c8af.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/1cab9fadff4a1bcdc0bc61d8bea6c8af.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"5701","description":"

Red vs. Blue "We Need Ammo!" -- Halo 3

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Famous Halo machinima Red vs. Blue has had a number of Easter Eggs and cameos in the core series entries, but none quite top this Halo 3 secret. Across Easy/Normal, Heroic, and Legendary difficulties, three different pairs of actors from the show seek to play out individual skits around the simple of act of trying to open a door and get some ammo. I'll just let you enjoy the above video, and say no more.

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/a7bc923961610fc9b094037a253c8b18.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/a7bc923961610fc9b094037a253c8b18.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"5700","description":"

Half-Naked Guy -- Halo 2 / Halo 3

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Back when Halo 2 first released, it was given an M rating for the usual violence and gore reasons, but also a new reason: partial nudity. Everyone assumed the ESRB Rating Board meant Cortana, who looks far more realistic than in the first game. Instead, it was over an Easter Egg of Bungie co-founder Jason Jones, posing half-naked, hidden in the opening cutscene.

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Not to leave a bit of silliness alone, Bungie then later included another cardboard cut out of Jones in Halo 3, hidden in a hard to access room.

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/b737b0ae88500d288d96d50cb89e47ba.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/b737b0ae88500d288d96d50cb89e47ba.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"5699","description":"

Microsoft Sam -- Halo 3

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No, your ears are not deceiving you. Hidden away at the end of the Scarab battle in The Covenant, on the opposite side of the gate from where you can hear Siege of Madrigal, hides MS Sam. The famous text to speech program spouts a number of in-jokes and references.

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This Easter Egg has become so hard to find posted on the web, I almost began to think my memory had failed me. Yet here it is, in all its glory. Do yourself a favor though, and skip to 2:44 in the above vid. You'll be glad you just got to the good stuff.

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/7ddbcc2ba1e3a2da0660175208926489.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/7ddbcc2ba1e3a2da0660175208926489.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"5698","description":"

The Siege of Madrigal Easter Egg -- Halo: Combat Evolved, Halo 2, Halo 3, Halo 3: ODST

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Shockingly enough, there was a time before Bungie made Halo games. Long before Master Chief was a twinkle in Cortana's eye, Bungie made the Mac-exclusive Marathon series. Seeing as they love to sneak tons of references of Marathon into Halo (to the point fans began to suspect the Halo series was meant to be a loose prequel trilogy), it seems fitting we include the longest running one: Siege of Madrigal.

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You see, Siege of Madrigal is one of the songs from Marathon, and can be found in every Bungie-developed entry in the Halo series in certain locations. It can be found in Assault on the Control Room in Halo: Combat Evolved. It can also be found on the Halo 2 multiplayer map Ivory Tower. Another appearance can be found in The Covenant in Halo 3. There are three places you can find the song in Halo: Reach, in a club, as elevator music at random, and as part of another Easter Egg.

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However, the most eventful appearance that exclusively focuses on the song is its appearance in Halo 3: ODST. What makes it so special? Well, as you can see in the video above, it prominently features former Bungie composer Marty O'Donnel, dancing with hearts to a comedic jazz remix of the theme. The same hearts would also later appear as an unlockable armor aesthetic in Halo: Reach.

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/b9e8ef3363280cfe220b9dfb2487bf7b.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/b9e8ef3363280cfe220b9dfb2487bf7b.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"5697","description":"

Caveman Family -- Halo 3 / Halo 3 ODST

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Another odd Halo 3 era Easter Egg series was the Caveman. The Caveman first appears as two separate Easter Eggs in the first level of Halo 3. You can find a whole family of primordial humans hiding around a secluded ledge.

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One of the Cavemen is holding a toy bear, which was meant for a cut Legendary Easter Egg where Master Chief would have grabbed the bear right before going into cryosleep. Later, you can encounter a lone Caveman, visible on a cliff by himself.

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The Easter Egg also made its way to Halo 3: ODST in the form of a single Caveman. According to Halo Nation:

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"The internal name for the 'cavemen' is "The Gorillehto". Originally an internal email prank, photoshopping Marcus Lehto's face on a female gorilla."

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/cfb122e268fa8db075aa1aebb6f49064.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/cfb122e268fa8db075aa1aebb6f49064.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"5695","description":"

The Secret Grunts -- Halo: Combat Evolved / Halo 2 / Halo 3

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Bungie sure loves their Grunts, so much so that they've hidden a different talking Grunt in every core entry of the series. First there's the Thirsty Grunt at the very end of Halo: Combat Evolved. Then there's the Cowardly Grunt in Halo 2, when Arbiter starts fighting the Brutes. Finally, in Halo 3, there is the Last Grunt, who is the last enemy in the game (and arguably the most hilarious). You can see them all in the video above.

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/6cc0ea3d55860be7517bb2394ae44da4.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/6cc0ea3d55860be7517bb2394ae44da4.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"5693","description":"

Happy Birthday Lauren! -- Halo 3

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While it might not be the most amazing Egg on its own, Happy Birthday Lauren! is the latest Easter Egg found in Halo 3. Unlike most of the Easter Eggs on this list, it was only just recently discovered. Much like Megg, it's a heartfelt message to a loved one. To unlock the Easter Egg, you just need to have the right date and time, then load a level in Halo 3.

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/6fdf1d2f142fcb43240242df8b1f81a8.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/6fdf1d2f142fcb43240242df8b1f81a8.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"5694","description":"

Grunt Playtime -- Halo 2 / Halo 2: Anniversary Edition

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This is a rare Easter Egg that has two versions across the Anniversary and regular editions. In the original version of Halo 2, if you looked closely during the opening cutscene, a Grunt could be seen playing with toys. Depending on the difficulty, he might be playing with different things.

\n\n

In the new Halo 2: Anniversary version, which you can view above, the grunt instead fights over a plush toy, held out of reach by a Jackal. They are Didact (Easy), Librarian (Normal), Master Chief (Heroic), and Rampant Cortana (Legendary).

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While the new version is easy to find, the original was very hard to see, if you even knew what to look for. As a result, it often is missed even by players who repeatedly run through the game.

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/f357f945f3697c9479272f57ca90137f.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/f357f945f3697c9479272f57ca90137f.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"5692","description":"

The Megg Easter Egg -- Halo: Combat Evolved

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Megg is one of the oldest and most obscure Easter Eggs in Halo: Combat Evolved. The required set of actions to trigger it are so specific, it's impressive people figured out how to find it. Megg is also the first of several hidden Easter Eggs left for loved ones in each Halo game.

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A second Megg easter egg exists in Halo 2, but merely requires you complete the level "Cairo Station" without losing your shields once, on Legendary difficulty. One you reach the final room, a sound clip will play: "Megg, please report to the red courtesy phone. Megg, to the red courtesy phone."

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/5df85a273e5eaba705480ad95af6b8fe.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/5df85a273e5eaba705480ad95af6b8fe.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"5703","description":"

The Halo series is one of the most popular shooters in the world, winning hundreds of awards and praise. Yet, there are still secrets most fans don't know are hidden within Bungie's magnum opus for the Xbox. To fill you in, here are the Top 10 Halo Easter Eggs that you probably missed. From loving little gestures to smart mouthed Grunts, there's a lot of ground to cover. Let's roll out Spartans!

"}]]]>
Top 4 Cigar/Cigarette-Wielding Badasses https://www.gameskinny.com/c92dw/top-4-cigarcigarette-wielding-badasses https://www.gameskinny.com/c92dw/top-4-cigarcigarette-wielding-badasses Sun, 05 Apr 2015 16:57:33 -0400 Pierre Fouquet

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Game Series:  Halo

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Character: Sgt. Avery Johnson

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Sgt. Johnson is the toughest sumbitch you will ever meet.

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He has survived multiple Covenant glassings -- including the first one, where he saved a whole bunch of farmers on Harvest. (Which coincidently is where PFC. Jenkins is from.) The whole team that Johnson speaks to at the beginning of Halo: CE is made of militia he was training on Harvest.

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Johnson is so rock solid that he turns ordinary farmers into the some of the most battle-hardened warriors, without them even fighting beforehand.

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He was picked to be in the first Spartan program, codenamed ORION (later known as SPARTAN-I). For this, only the best were picked, and he wasn't even 30 years old at the time.

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Johnson is so much of a badass that he got infected by the Flood, and even that couldn't stop him. I'm still angry at the light bulb!

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/425792137341d620ddac2d43f2abad9f.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_425792137341d620ddac2d43f2abad9f.jpg","type":"slide","id":"61954","description":"

Game Series:  Metal Gear Solid

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Character: Big Boss

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Big Boss was the founder of five different special forces units and his very own mercenary state. On top of this, he's had nine different code names -- because when you are this amazing, people don't want to simply call you by your real name. Big Boss has also spent most of his career using only one eye.

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Even after taking a piece of shrapnel in the face and losing his left arm, he simply lived with it. He got a new robotic arm, and later got the shrapnel removed. He has been constantly fighting for whole life -- roughly 55 years, as he lived till the age of 79.

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If I could pick one person to sneak into Fort Knox with only a toothpick, I would pick Big Boss. He can fight hand-to-hand, shoot, and be as silent as a mouse. He was so badass they cloned him... 3 times!

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/b34ad9ed9ec9b80906e11f2e970fdd29.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_b34ad9ed9ec9b80906e11f2e970fdd29.jpg","type":"slide","id":"61953","description":"

Game Series: Duke Nukem

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Character: Duke Nukem

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The Duke chews bubble gum, and kicks arse, but is always out of bubble gum -- he really needs to stock up more often.

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Even though Duke Nukem: Forever (DNF) was a lackluster game, that didn't stop The King from being a major pain in the alien butt, in both DNF and all other games.

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He kills The Cycloid Emperor in several games, without thinking twice. He even survives a nuclear explosion, a dam blowing up in his face, and many other 'accidents' that would atomize anyone else.

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On top of all of that, he is constantly spurting out one-liners, from the ever popular "I'm gonna get medieval on your asses!" to "That's gonna leave a mark!" And then the famous "it's time to kick ass and chew bubblegum...and I'm all outta gum."

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Duke loves 3 things in life; babes, bullets, and bombs. That's what makes him a badass.

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"Hail to the king baby."

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/1a6b7c6fcbbd687442cc584e6307de1a.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_1a6b7c6fcbbd687442cc584e6307de1a.jpg","type":"slide","id":"61950","description":"

Game Series: BioShock

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Character: Dr. Brigid Tenenbaum

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Being born into a Jewish family is never going to be good news when the Nazis roll around. Tenenbaum was captured and sent to Auschwitz, the worst of the concentration camps. But as you may be able to guess, she survived. And she was only 16.

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She was not only able to endure, but she flourished. She learned that the Germans were experimenting on prisoners, and would correct any German scientist who got their science wrong.

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After this, she turned her full attention to science -- specifically genetics. She went on to create both ADAM and the Little Sisters, she calling them her little ones. She later saved several Little Sisters from Rapture without splicing herself, she didn't use a single plasmid.

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This earns Tenenbaum the mark of badassery -- not only physically, but academically as well.

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/04d272549f68915b2fabd40090f853ae.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_04d272549f68915b2fabd40090f853ae.jpg","type":"slide","id":"61949","description":"

Badass

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ˈbadas/

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 Someone who is hard to kill, tough as nails, and is generally above awesome.

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There are many badass characters in games, but none are grittier than the cigar or cigarette-wielding kind. These guys and gals run up against impossible odds and blast through. Not only without breaking a sweat, but without letting their choice of tobacco-filled stick burn out or break.

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Why not tell me your favourite smoking badass in the comments below?

"}]]]>
Why Halo: Online is a Terrible Idea https://www.gameskinny.com/roz56/why-halo-online-is-a-terrible-idea https://www.gameskinny.com/roz56/why-halo-online-is-a-terrible-idea Thu, 26 Mar 2015 06:17:46 -0400 Elijah Beahm

As a PC gamer who has both of the original Halo titles not only still in his possession, but still installed and occasionally booted up on PC... it's been a really long time waiting for the threequel to "finish the fight" for us.

Some of us, shockingly enough, didn't want to get an Xbox 360. We just wanted to play Bungie's excellent series on PC. Why do I mention this?

Halo is finally returning to PC as Halo: Online!

A F2P Game... Exclusive to Russia...


Wait, what? This is a joke, right? You're punking us. You can't be serious!

No, your eyes are not deceiving you. Apparently Microsoft's first attempt at bringing Halo back to PC gamers is a Russian-only F2P game. I keep saying that, tossing the words around in my mouth, and for the life of me I still can't tell you how anyone could have thought that particular combination made sense.

"Let's take an arcade-y, fast-paced, Quake-y shooter to a market known for favoring hardcore games like Stalker, Death to Spies, Cryostasis, and Metro 2033" is the kind of suggestion a crazy person would give. I'm sure there is some overlap in demographics, don't get me wrong, but not -that- big an overlap.

Let's face it, anyone tech-savvy enough will just use a proxy server to play this if they aren't in Russia. This will be even easier seeing as the game is apparently being built for low-end PCs, so even fairly old RIGs will be able to run this game.

The game will be based on a heavily modified version of Halo 3's competitive multiplayer.

Let that last detail sink in.

So on top of being released to a market that Halo doesn't normally cater to,  Halo: Online will be using a game from 2007 as its base. Is this some elaborate joke, Microsoft? Fans asked for Halo 3 back in the day, half a decade later you gave us a port of a mobile game. Fans ask for the Master Chief Collection, you give us a Russian-only F2P game.

What happens if we ask for Halo: Online in North America? Will you port it to Xbox 360 just to spite us? I normally wouldn't be this candid and blunt but speaking as a fan... this is getting absolutely ridiculous.


Seen here, Master Chief, missing since 2007

That's not to say a F2P Halo game isn't out of the question.

In fact, it would make a lot of sense. Except you'd aim for an international release, and use it as a test bed for cross-platform play for PC and Xbox One in a Halo game, in advance of a possible Halo: The Master Chief Collection PC port. This would be 100% legitimate. Star Wars: Battlefront 3 almost used a similar approach back when Lucas Arts was finally going to take over developer duties for their game.

Instead, this is being exclusively built for PC, and Microsoft is already shooting down notions of it coming to Xbox One. Because it's apparently better to try and stand out in a niche of a niche market that isn't all that interested in your genre, than offer a free version of a critically acclaimed multiplayer on your console that is not selling great.

This is like not knowing how to swim, and jumping into the deepest end of the pool. I want to see Halo: Online succeed -- truly I do -- but it is basically being built for failure at this rate. If it actually manages to pull out a win, it will either be due to serious changes in the game's playstyle, or by some sudden untapped niche popping up in response.

What scares me is, I far more likely expect Microsoft is betting on the latter case. They've made claims they are aiming to bend the game to Russian gamers' tastes, but this is Microsoft we're talking about. Anyone who has endured Windows 8 understands just how bad they can be at handling requested changes and features.

Let's Hope Russia is the Beta for International Release

In the best case, we'll find out this is basically an elaborate public beta for Halo 3 coming to PC. That would be fantastic, but that is also just the dreams of a sad fan who just wishes he hadn't had to get an Xbox merely to play more Halo. The excuses given for holding the series hostage for a decade have worn thin. At this point, I'm just starting to feel bitter, and I am not alone.

While Microsoft continually fails at giving more than an occasional glance at PC gamers, Halo PC gamers are actually pulling off some impressive things on their own:

PC is Ready for More Halo

Silent Cartographer Evolved (above) just released for the original game, which completely reworks and updates the famous level to a degree further than even Halo: Anniversary can speak to. New enemy types, new scripted sequences, new weapons, and even exclusive events only available on Legendary difficulty. Made by fans, for fans.

On top of that, fans have made a workaround to get Halo 2's multiplayer working on PC, with a new ranking system to boot. Now, it does require a torrented version of Halo 2 so it's a bit ambiguous, but the workaround has proven to be successful and there's a matchmaking list of potential players you can reach out to and pair up with.

That's not even counting the guy remaking the first level of Halo 3, in Halo: Custom Edition. Yes, seriously, it has gotten to the point that we ourselves are basically making our own Halo: The Master Chief Collection. We want it that badly, but still we're waiting. With such a fever pitch of Halo PC gaming activity, why Microsoft isn't jumping on this powder keg is beyond me.

Halo: Online in of itself is not a bad idea, but at the current direction Microsoft is taking it, it is a terrible way to do it. I sincerely hope I'm wrong, and that they have something magic up their sleeve. But from where I am standing, this is just a bad move that could have been a great step forward.

What do you think? Is Microsoft's plan sound? Or do you think they should port the Xbox 360 entries in the franchise? Let us know in the comments below.

Image Credit: Engadget, Bungie.Net PC Gamer

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New Free Halo is Now in Beta, but Only in Russia https://www.gameskinny.com/5o6yn/new-free-halo-is-now-in-beta-but-only-in-russia https://www.gameskinny.com/5o6yn/new-free-halo-is-now-in-beta-but-only-in-russia Wed, 25 Mar 2015 19:00:00 -0400 Victor Ren

343 Studios is bringing the beloved Halo franchise back for another round, and this time solely for the PC. A new game called Halo Online will be debuting it's beta this spring for PC gamers, while also being completely free to online players. The catch is... only gamers in Russia will be allowed into the beta.

Halo Online will be powered by a modified version of the Halo 3 engine so that every computer from high to low end will be able to run it. The game includes no single-player campaign, only an online multiplayer mode which is set on a secret UNSC space station used to train Spartan-IV warriors.

343 studios has claimed that this game has been built from the ground up for the PC and has no intentions of bringing it to the Xbox One. Also that they will be using this beta as a learning experience, and that they want to merely focus on the players in the region of Russia. This means that if you live anywhere outside of Russia, you probably won't be getting your hands on the beta soon, unless you're planning on a relocation.

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10 Fantastic Cortana Cosplays https://www.gameskinny.com/iyxox/10-fantastic-cortana-cosplays https://www.gameskinny.com/iyxox/10-fantastic-cortana-cosplays Tue, 24 Mar 2015 11:09:29 -0400 Elijah Beahm

[{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/da6e4c90b8ac099fe29f7ac005f68ee7.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_da6e4c90b8ac099fe29f7ac005f68ee7.jpg","type":"slide","id":"61431","description":"

Arguably one of the best Cortana cosplay's I've ever found, but sadly I am unable to locate the cosplayer's information. If anyone knows who this is, please let me know in the comments below so I may credit her fantastic work!

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/96e1771da8348193d6d7039c272bca87.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_96e1771da8348193d6d7039c272bca87.jpg","type":"slide","id":"61429","description":"

SpartanJenzii's ready for a fight with an excellent replica Covenant Plasma Repeater and great bodysuit cosplay of Halo 3's Cortana.

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/e95b8058ce05276e79842a6dfbeeb3eb.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_e95b8058ce05276e79842a6dfbeeb3eb.jpg","type":"slide","id":"61426","description":"

Th3 Rouge shows off some stunning body paint cosplay of Cortana in Halo 4, along with a fantastic replica Covenant Plasma Sword.

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/cdc2529086c198c40e1e4f2aae6e26f5.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_cdc2529086c198c40e1e4f2aae6e26f5.jpg","type":"slide","id":"61420","description":"

In this adorable cosplay, xKittyxViciousx's husband and daughter are going out as on Halloween as Master Chief and Cortana.

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/b8b4d531399ef4ed447871c325d05abc.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_b8b4d531399ef4ed447871c325d05abc.jpg","type":"slide","id":"61413","description":"

Yukliefay's cosplay of Cortana is stunning not just in the execution (considering this was a spontaneous cosplay), but in just how much she catches you with that stare. Many cosplays convey the aloof or silly nature of Cortana, but not many attempt to emulate her intensity during the events of Halo 2 and Halo 4.

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/9a8438badb3d490db5a1256ca0ea9182.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_9a8438badb3d490db5a1256ca0ea9182.jpg","type":"slide","id":"61423","description":"

Cosplayer EvieEvangelion pulls off two feats at once. First, the cosplay looks so painterly it doesn't even look like a photo. Second, she has the rare claim to be cosplaying as a never shown on-screen variant of Cortana from the novel Halo: First Strike. It's in the novel that she originally transitioned from her purple form in Halo: Combat Evoled, to her new, blue form in Halo 2.

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/321692e0b57c4b496dc69570fc53af31.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_321692e0b57c4b496dc69570fc53af31.jpg","type":"slide","id":"61422","description":"

Cosplayer Hyokenaseisou's work is doubly on display in this little but of fun at PAX. Cosplaying herself as Cortana, she went toe to toe with a fellow cosplayer in SPARTAN armor she also designed.

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/a0e6a7dfe59031c6b23598e25797a2c7.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_a0e6a7dfe59031c6b23598e25797a2c7.jpg","type":"slide","id":"61428","description":"

msventress's cosplay of Halo 3 Cortana is particularly impressive, as her body suit is entirely hand-pained with fabric paint.

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/bbf6ac03cb83ba413f9bdea58ffd8751.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_bbf6ac03cb83ba413f9bdea58ffd8751.jpg","type":"slide","id":"61430","description":"

SpartanJenzii's ready for a fight with an excellent replica Covenant Plasma Repeater and great bodysuit cosplay of Halo 3's Cortana.

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/f21e5bda3e866f4de2aa10973f41a7dd.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_f21e5bda3e866f4de2aa10973f41a7dd.jpg","type":"slide","id":"61411","description":"

LittleNeko is ready to fight by Master Chief's side in this awesome cosplay of Halo 2's Cortana and Master Chief. Particular props (excuse the pun) for those great Needler and Plasma Pistol replicas!

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/997960457e679c42b4d4b935fc47d15b.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_997960457e679c42b4d4b935fc47d15b.jpg","type":"slide","id":"61417","description":"

In honor of the news that Cortana is returning in Halo 5: Guardians, let's celebrate with some fan cosplay homages to that great lady in blue (and sometimes purple) Cortana! From stunning paintwork to detailed technical work, there is some impressive cosplay out there amongst Halo fans.

"}]]]>
Deleted Scenes from Halo 3 and Cut Mode from Halo: Reach Revealed https://www.gameskinny.com/xejiw/deleted-scenes-from-halo-3-and-cut-mode-from-halo-reach-revealed https://www.gameskinny.com/xejiw/deleted-scenes-from-halo-3-and-cut-mode-from-halo-reach-revealed Wed, 18 Mar 2015 10:45:39 -0400 Elijah Beahm

It's been nearly a decade since Halo 3 released on the Xbox 360, but it seems Bungie's final "core" entry in the franchise still has a few more surprises for us. YouTuber Gamecheat 13 has found (shown above) deleted scenes from the game's campaign mode. Some bits got reworked, and others dropped entirely, but it is fascinating getting to see a glimpse of what the game evolved from.

On top of this, Gamecheat 13 has found other cut pieces of content, including the cut space combat Sabre Slayer mode from Halo: Reach, and additional cut dialogue from Halo 3.

Bungie had previously spoken of this mode, mentioning that they had tested it, but never actually included it in the game. Seeing it for the first time is quite interesting. That said it does look like, in its current state, it was a bit repetitive.


It's been a great week for people finding cut content. First, more footage of Free Radical's Star Wars: Battlefront 3 and now we get some from Halo 3 and Halo: Reach.

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