Lego Harry Potter Articles RSS Feed | GameSkinny.com Lego Harry Potter RSS Feed on GameSkinny.com https://www.gameskinny.com/ en Launch Media Network Get Ready To Relive LEGO Harry Potter With The Completely Remastered Collection https://www.gameskinny.com/afmih/get-ready-to-relive-lego-harry-potter-with-the-completely-remastered-collection https://www.gameskinny.com/afmih/get-ready-to-relive-lego-harry-potter-with-the-completely-remastered-collection Thu, 06 Sep 2018 12:12:31 -0400 QuintLyn

Today's a good day for fans of LEGO, Harry Potter, or both. Warner Brothers Interactive Entertainment, along with TT Games and the LEGO Group, announced today that LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4 and Years 5-7 are being introduced to the Nintendo Switch and Xbox One for the first time as one big remastered collection.

The collection will arrive on October 30, giving everyone plenty of time to add it to their holiday shopping lists.

The remastered collection will offer players everything they loved from the originals -- including the trademark LEGO humor, and the chance to be part of Hogwarts during Harry's years there -- in a shiny new package with enhanced graphics, visual effects, and more.

It will also contain two DLC packs, including a Character Pack featuring Godric Gryffindor, Yule Ball Harry, Helga Hufflepuff, Lockhart in a straightjacket, Luna with her lion's head, Peeves, Hermione in a pink dress, Ron Weasley as a ghoul, Rowena Ravenclaw, and Salazr Slytherin.

There's also a spell pack containing Cantis, Denaugeo, Ducklifors, Melofors, and Tentaclifors.

This new collection should be great for longtime fans of the game series, as well as those just getting into it. It also sounds perfect for all those fans who would like to share it with their kids. So, Potter-heads -- or LEGO fans -- mark your calendar for October 30. You've got some wizarding to do. 

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5 Franchises We Want to See in Lego Dimensions https://www.gameskinny.com/ijtsb/5-franchises-we-want-to-see-in-lego-dimensions https://www.gameskinny.com/ijtsb/5-franchises-we-want-to-see-in-lego-dimensions Tue, 09 Feb 2016 01:09:03 -0500 Venisia Gonzalez

We are all huge fans of the Lego games that come into our lives to offer a little humor and a lot of fun. From franchise-specific games to Lego Dimensions, Lego characters have a place in our hearts. It's also obvious the developers love them as well.

Lego Dimensions currently features wonderful characters from fourteen franchises. You'll find DC Comics, The Lord of the Rings, The Lego Movie, The Wizard of Oz, Portal 2, Lego Ninjago, Lego Legends of Chima, Jurassic World, Doctor Who, The Simpsons, Ghostbusters, Scooby-Doo, Back to the Future, and Midway Arcade.

But there are always more characters just waiting to be added. Here are our picks for franchises that would make great additions to Lego Dimensions.

Harry Potter

Warner Bros. has brought the wonderful world of Harry Potter to life in Lego Harry Potter: Years 1-4 and Lego Harry Potter: Years 5-7. Who can say it wouldn't fit perfectly in Lego Dimensions? Many fans are hoping their favorite beloved characters make their way into the game.

Characters like:

  • Harry Potter
  • Hermione Granger
  • Ron Weasley
  • Sirius Black
  • Professor Dumbledore
  • Professor Snape
  • Lord Voldemort

Marvel Universe

With games like Lego Superheroes and Lego Marvel Avengers, fitting these characters into Dimension seems like a no-brainer. There are already characters from the DC Universe, so why not add Marvel?

Imagine having Batman and Ironman, or Frodo and Hulk being required to work together against the forces of Lord Vortech. Imagine the back-and-forth dialogue between The Doctor and Tony Stark. That alone would have me in stitches thinking about the ultimate Sumo wrestling of brain power.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

These Kung Fu, pizza-eating, mutated turtles are the ultimate in fun. Since the 1980s, they have captured the heart of fans young and older. The Lego Multiverse just seems incomplete without the TMNT teaming up to protect the Twelve Foundational Elements.

We'd love to see some of the great characters from the series, such as:

  • Donatello
  • Michaelangelo
  • Leonardo
  • Raphael
  • Splinter
  • Shredder
  • April O'Neil
  • Casey Jones
  • Karai

Lord Vortech would have a run for his money with Shredder and the Foot Clan in a bid for control.

Plants vs. Zombies

Plants vs. Zombies is such a beloved series. This adorable Walking Dead of gardening has found its way from mobile to consoles, to even comics by Paul Tobin. Any of the hilarious characters would be fun to see as an addition.

Characters such as:

  • Sunflower
  • Disco Zombie
  • Chomper
  • Zombie Yeti
  • Gatling Peashooter
  • Dr. Zomboss

Firefly

Firefly is a cult favorite by Joss Whedon. This science-fiction/western didn't last long on air, but stayed forever in the hearts of fans. Fitting in the beloved characters, prior to Serenity, would definitely make Lego Dimensions a must-buy on principal!

Character favorites include:

  • Malcolm "Mal" Reynolds
  • Zoe Washburne
  • River Tam
  • Kaywinnet Lee "Kaylee" Frye
  • Jayne Cobb
  • Hoban "Wash" Washburne

How you'd like a Firefly-class spaceship—anyone?

What do you think of our suggestions? Do you have any recommendations for franchises that you'd like to see in Lego Dimensions? Let us know in the comments.

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7 of the best local co-op PC games you should play https://www.gameskinny.com/0egx3/7-of-the-best-local-co-op-pc-games-you-should-play https://www.gameskinny.com/0egx3/7-of-the-best-local-co-op-pc-games-you-should-play Wed, 13 Jan 2016 17:18:37 -0500 Rob Thubron

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1. Rayman Legends

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When talking about local co-op games, one title that you’ll find constantly gets mentioned is Rayman Legends, and with good reason. Not only is it one of the greatest local co-operative experiences you can have on the PC, but it’s also one of the best platformers ever made.

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It may be of the 2D, retro variety, but that doesn’t make Legends any less brilliant. In fact, it’s that classic style mixed with a modern engine and beautiful graphics that pushes the game to the top of the class.

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The two-player cooperative element is one of Legends' outstanding features. Thanks to its intuitive gameplay, it won’t be long before you and your fellow gamer are both flying through the levels in an almost total synchronization. It can be quite a beautiful sight, seeing the two characters moving in perfect unison. But the best part of the game are the astounding musical levels, which represent some of the best design and use of music I’ve ever seen in a game.

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If you and your local gaming partner fancy competing against each other, then you can give the awesome Kung Foot mini-game a go. You could also try out the challenge of the day, attempt to break some online records, play some classic levels, or unlock more characters/worlds. Rayman Legends will keep both you and the person sharing your couch happy for a long time.

\n

Simple to play, hard to complete, utterly brilliant, and still the best local co-op game around.

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What are your favorite co-op games to play on PC? Let me know down in the comments.

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2. Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light

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I used to find the idea of blending Tomb Raider with an isometric shoot-‘em-up had the same level of appeal as eating chips while on the toilet: I could see how some people may enjoy it, but it just seemed a bit too weird for me.

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But eventually I decided to live dangerously and give it a try (the game, not the toilet thing) and I was very pleasantly surprised. It may be six years old, but Guardian of Light is a genuinely excellent two-player co-op game. I'd even go so far as to say that it's one of the best I've ever played.

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The combat in Guardian of Light is outstanding, using the familiar twin-stick shooting method that always brings to my mind one the granddaddies of the genre – The Chaos Engine (yes, I’m very old).

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The puzzles manage to hit that sweet spot of being neither frustratingly taxing nor insultingly simple - you’ll certainly have those Eureka moments when you figure some of them out. Its RPG elements add another layer of depth to proceedings, and some of the later weapons are enormous fun to use.

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Working together is essential in this game and a complete joy -- it really is one of the most underrated local co-op titles ever made. Give it a try ASAP. But avoid the sequel, it’s pants.

"},{"image":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/5/8/3/583b9f517238059798126ba4cfa23f07.jpg","thumb":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/5/8/3/tiny_583b9f517238059798126ba4cfa23f07.jpg","type":"slide","id":"99385","description":"

3. Rocket League

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There are few things to say about Rocket League that haven’t already been said. Its incredibly engaging mix of soccer and RC vehicles makes it one of the most addictive games of all time. Not only is very easy to pick up and play, but its five-minute matches make it one of the few modern titles that you can “have a quick go” on.

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The local co-operative option is provided via split screen and two controllers. While splitting a TV in half isn’t everyone’s favorite way of adding a local player, it’s pretty much the only option for this kind of game.

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Playing with a friend can be great fun, and having your teammate physically sitting next to you means that communication and strategizing is a lot easier. Few things are as satisfying as when you and your gaming partner hammer some total strangers who are on the other side of the world.

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4. Portal 2

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Portal 2 is a magnificent game, and easily one of the best puzzlers ever created. But what a lot of people don’t realize is that the two-player co-op mode, which can be played locally using split-screen, is even better than the single-player game.

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Valve appreciate show much people love co-op games, and has included a separate campaign with a unique story, test chambers, and two new player characters just for this mode.

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If you do try out Portal 2’s local co-op, you’ll be amazed at how different it feels from playing solo. You’re likely to spend half the time talking through the puzzles with your gaming partner, trying to figure out what to do. Then it’s a case of working together to put the plans into action. Few games teach people to work together and communicate as well as Portal 2 – it should be used in relationship counseling.  

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5. Broforce

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Getting constantly compared to Contra makes any game brilliant in my book. And the fact that you can use Rambo (or Rambro, as he is known here) to kill Satan is the icing on the Broforce cake.

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Not only is Broforce a rock-hard, side-scrolling, platform shooter, but it’s also a love letter to the cheesy action movies of the 80’s and 90’s. It may be gloriously silly, but it certainly isn’t stupid. The cool pixel art style, numerous recognizable ‘bro’ characters, and the destructible graphics make playing the game in local co-op mode both brilliant and hilarious. If Chuck Norris made PC games, he’d make Broforce.

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6. The Lego series

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Even though they’ve been around for over a decade now, the Lego games tend to be the first name a lot of people think of when you mention co-operative two-player titles.

\n

The combination of simple, fun gameplay and brilliant humor provides the licensed Lego games with some of the best local co-op experiences in PC history. The puzzles that require two characters to work together range from simple to fiendish in their difficulty, and completing them gives players a real sense of achievement.

\n

But if they’re so good, how come they’re at number six? Well, as enjoyable as they are, their format hasn’t changed much in ten years, and familiarity breeds contempt, as they say. Despite the latest entry in the series, Lego Dimensions, introducing a Skylanders-like toy-to-life element, it doesn’t really add much extra to the co-op play.

\n

As for which games are the best in the Lego series, I personally find the Indiana Jones and Harry Potter titles to be the apex of the series, while the aforementioned Dimensions entry is regarded as the most enjoyable in recent years. Good co-op fun for all the family.

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7. The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth

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While The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth may feature the kind of same-screen, local co-op play suitable for the living room, the game is about as appropriate for kids as an Aphex Twin video – and about as darkly twisted.

\n

You wouldn’t expect a title based on both religious and semi-autobiographical attempted filicide to be a fun-packed romp, but it is. It’s important to point out, though, that although the game does have a co-op mode -- the second player takes the role of a floating baby who can’t pick up items (they’re shared) or enter rooms (Isaac has to lead).

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Despite the reduced functionality of player two, Rebirth’s top-down, twin-stick shooter gameplay and randomly generated dungeons make it a hugely enjoyable experience for both players. Be warned, though, it does have several rogue-like elements, including being hard as nails and permadeath. Lose all your health before making it through the eight levels, and it’s back to the start.

"},{"image":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/0/0/e/00e762daaccc8753e3b3ba53d18bae29.jpg","thumb":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/0/0/e/tiny_00e762daaccc8753e3b3ba53d18bae29.jpg","type":"slide","id":"99058","description":"

The PC may be a brilliant gaming platform, but it’s always been viewed as the inferior option when it comes to local co-op games. As much as I love 1440p resolutions, Steam, cheaper titles, and the ability to play games at more than 60 frames per second, I do lament the fact that so few desktop titles are created with local co-op in mind.

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In recent years, however, this trend has slowly started to change. Rather than the usual small handful of titles that feature local co-op modes, an increasing number of developers have begun to realize that the PC is making headway into the living room space that used to be reserved solely for consoles, and that their games should reflect this.

\n

As more and more smaller, form-factor PCs and dedicated Steam boxes make their way beneath the family television, more PC owners want titles that feature local co-op modes. Sometimes it's better to play with family, friends and partners, than against them.

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So, if you’re wondering what some of the best local co-operative games are on the PC, here are 7 that you should try. 

"}]]]>
Best mobile games based on your Kids favorite movies https://www.gameskinny.com/bq6u2/best-mobile-games-based-on-your-kids-favorite-movies https://www.gameskinny.com/bq6u2/best-mobile-games-based-on-your-kids-favorite-movies Sun, 20 Dec 2015 08:35:39 -0500 Venisia Gonzalez

[{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/30b4b89201f8b9038eef82a0358d6a8e.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/30b4b89201f8b9038eef82a0358d6a8e.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"7354","description":"

Disney's Cinderella Free Fall

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Ratings:
\n
    \n
  • Google: 4/5 - ‎94,900 votes
  • \n
  • iOS: 3.5/5 - ‎38 reviews
  • \n
  • Amazon: 4.2/5 - 47 votes
  • \n
  • Windows: 4.2/5 - 4,847 votes
  • \n
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Play as young Ella with her animal friends Gus and Jacqueline by completing over 100 levels of making matches with butterfly jewels on the game board. Each level has a move limit and a different requirement, from earning points to collect large quantities of gems, and more.

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Highlights:

\n
    \n
  • Unlock power-ups
  • \n
  • Unlock characters
  • \n
\n
Available on iOS, Windows, Amazon apps, and Android.
\n

I hope these great games satisfy your little one's gaming craves!

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/62feb11444d6787958cf2fc2b81a1bab.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/62feb11444d6787958cf2fc2b81a1bab.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"7353","description":"

LEGO: Harry Potter Years 1-4

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Ratings:
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    \n
  • iOS: 4/5 - ‎4,130 reviews
  • \n
\n

Relive the world of J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter by taking control of the LEGO renditions of Harry, Ron, and Hermione as they make their way through their first four years at Hogwarts. Explore, play puzzles, and duel in this mobile version of the PC and console game.

\n

Highlights:

\n
    \n
  • Tri-Wizard Tournament
  • \n
  • Quidditch World Cup
  • \n
  • Basilisk battle in the Chamber of Secrets
  • \n
  • Encounter Aragog and Voldemort
  • \n
\n

This game is available for $4.99 on the mobile app store.

\n
Available on iOS and Android.
"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/3821321aa691e7970ab711d423698434.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/3821321aa691e7970ab711d423698434.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"7352","description":"

Disney's Frozen Free Fall

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Ratings:
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    \n
  • Google: 4.5/5 - ‎1,287,058 votes
  • \n
  • iOS: 3.5/5 - ‎127 reviews
  • \n
  • Amazon: 4.2/5 - ‎8,824 reviews
  • \n
  • Windows: 4.3/5 - 16,000 votes
  • \n
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Enjoy a puzzle matching adventure in the Kingdom of Arendelle. Play as the memorable Elsa, Olaf, Anna, and more while sliding gems to create matches of three or more like-symbols, destroying ice crystals, and earning points to complete each level’s goals.

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Highlights:

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    \n
  • Unlock power-ups
  • \n
  • Unlock favorite characters
  • \n
  • Explore loads of icy puzzles
  • \n
\n
Available on iOS, Windows, Amazon apps, and Android.
"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/13bfcd4e28a53e40294669efc34a4dbb.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/13bfcd4e28a53e40294669efc34a4dbb.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"7351","description":"

qInside Out Thought Bubbles

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Ratings:
\n
    \n
  • Google: 4.5/5 - ‎370,677 votes
  • \n
  • iOS: 4.5/5 - ‎71 reviews
  • \n
  • Amazon: 4.2/5 - 889 votes
  • \n
  • Windows: 4.5/5 - 12,000 votes
  • \n
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Relive all the emotions of Inside Out's delightful characters in this "shoot and match" memory game. Play as Riley’s emotions: Joy, Fear, Anger, Disgust and Sadness in over 125 levels. The game features multiple themed areas from the film, including Family Island, Dream Productions, and Imagination Land.

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Highlights:

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    \n
  • Unlock characters
  • \n
  • Over 200 levels
  • \n
  • Unlock power-ups for each emotion
  • \n
  • Challenge yourself and friends
  • \n
  • Journey through Brain Freezes and Brain Storms
  • \n
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Available on iOS, Android, Amazon apps, and Windows.
"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/51ab6fdb23c9bc798d1b7c407b3e1d9a.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/51ab6fdb23c9bc798d1b7c407b3e1d9a.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"7347","description":"

Minions Paradise

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Ratings:
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    \n
  • Google: 4/5 - ‎449,682 votes
  • \n
  • iOS: 4.5/5 - ‎528 reviews
  • \n
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Create a tropical paradise for the Minions after Phil ruins their cruise and strands them on a chain of islands. Complete quests by constructing buildings and sending the Minions to complete tasks around them. Collect coconuts from a palm tree, or even bamboo from a bamboo grove to craft into building materials. Send minions to play various mini-games like Fishing Frenzy: help a Minion jump over obstacles as it 'alligator skis' (water skis) around the island.

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Available on iOS and Android.
"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/03246907110b878484292eadaa1ad6e8.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/03246907110b878484292eadaa1ad6e8.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"7348","description":"

Peanuts: Snoopy's Town Tale

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Ratings:
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    \n
  • Google: 3.9/5 - 1,006 votes
  • \n
  • iOS: 3.5/5 - ‎48 reviews
  • \n
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Celebrate the holiday season with Snoopy and his pals. Become the new kids in the neighborhood and help Snoopy build the town from the comic, including Charlie Brown's house. Many buildings and decorations can generate resources to be used in crafting recipes to create new items. Complete the quests and earns tons of rewards.

\n

Highlights:

\n
    \n
  • Unlock Christmas decorations
  • \n
  • Unlock characters
  • \n
  • Unlock character costumes
  • \n
  • Unlock animations, levels, and more
  • \n
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Available on iOS and Android.
"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/94cd90d73893a82e908ebc270ecf16e3.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/94cd90d73893a82e908ebc270ecf16e3.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"7349","description":"

Despicable Me: Minion Rush

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Ratings:
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    \n
  • Google: 4.5/5 - ‎8,124,869 votes
  • \n
  • iOS: 4.5/5 - ‎642 reviews
  • \n
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Gru’s loyal minions need to collect exotic fruit to make jelly. Play the game by controlling a minion, either Dave, Carl, or Jerry, in fun, fast-paced challenges. Jump, roll, dodge, and scramble against other players. Encounter secret areas, boss fights, power-ups, ride Gru’s rocket, destroy things as the 'Mega Minion,' or collect fruit while riding the Fluffy Unicorn.

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Highlights:

\n
    \n
  • Jelly Lab Mode
  • \n
  • Global Events Mode
  • \n
  • Special Mission Mode
  • \n
  • Races Mode
  • \n
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Available on iOS and Android.
"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/3714ee612e6d87de8ba79d1152d6f94e.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/3714ee612e6d87de8ba79d1152d6f94e.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"7350","description":"

Disney-Pixar's The Good Dinosaur: Dino Crossing

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Ratings:
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    \n
  • Google: 4.3/5 - 3.546 votes
  • \n
  • iOS: 4.5/5 - ‎34 reviews
  • \n
  • Amazon: 4.5/5 - 20 reviews
  • \n
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Join Arlo, a young Apatosaurus, and a young human boy named Spot as they travel throughout the world. Help them survive against the environment and other inhabitants by tapping on the screen to move; similar to Frogger. Tap on the screen to make Arlo or Spot move forward one line in the world, and swipe to move their character left, right, or backward to avoid obstacles or collect berries.

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Highlights:

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    \n
  • Journey Mode
  • \n
  • Endless Mode
  • \n
  • Berry Bonanza Mode
  • \n
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Available on iOS, Amazon app store, and Android.
"},{"image":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/1/9/2/1925cbbf1cd6f820a06e5692c3030299.jpg","thumb":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/1/9/2/tiny_1925cbbf1cd6f820a06e5692c3030299.jpg","type":"slide","id":"96795","description":"

If you're looking for great mobile games for your little ones, here are some suggestions based on their favorite films. From Disney-Pixar's The Good Dinosaur to Disney's Cinderella, to the Minions!

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Kids will benefit from the memory matches and timed levels to enhance their problem solving skills. This is important as they will learn to develop critical thinking skills and strong memorization. It won't feel like they are busy on a boring educational tutorial, since these games are plain fun. Plus, the games are guaranteed to keep them occupied on a long car ride or on a trip shopping.

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These games are available on Windows, iOS, Amazon apps, and/or Android devices, and most are free (unless indicated).

"}]]]>
Five of the best PC games to play with your non-gaming partner https://www.gameskinny.com/ajrd8/five-of-the-best-pc-games-to-play-with-your-non-gaming-partner https://www.gameskinny.com/ajrd8/five-of-the-best-pc-games-to-play-with-your-non-gaming-partner Mon, 28 Sep 2015 02:30:01 -0400 Rob Thubron

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1. The Lego series 

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Same-screen cooperative play in video games can be a difficult thing to pull off, but anyone wanting an example of the best way to implement this mechanic should look at the Lego series. While it’s true that some of the earlier titles do occasionally struggle with split screen, the modern games make playing next to someone on the sofa a brilliant and non-restricting experience.

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Aside from being such an amazing two-player game, the main reason why the Lego series takes the top spot is because they're so incredibly simple for anyone, even 100% certified non-gamers, to pick up and play. Smashing things, collecting coins and holding down a button to build structures can bring endless amounts of satisfaction to all who play these games.

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The simple puzzles require two characters to work together range from simple to fiendish in their difficulty, and completing one really gives players a sense of teamwork. The games are based on such a wide variety of franchises that there’s bound to be one your non-gaming partner is a fan of. It’s worth remembering that while the Lego titles did improve in quality as each new game was released, they also increased in complexity; I personally find Lego’s Indiana Jones and Harry Potter games to be the apex of the series.

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Once you’ve got your (now-former) non-gaming partner hooked on Lego, you can expand and start introducing them to the huge range of PC games out there. Before you know it, they’ll be telling you they can’t come over this weekend because they need to work on their Dota 2 game and have a Civilization marathon planned. 

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Video games - the great creator and destroyer of relationships.

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Buy Lego Harry Potter here and Lego Indiana Jones here.

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What other good PC titles can be played with non-gamers? Let us know in the comments below.

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2. Game of Thrones

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When it comes to cinematic gaming experiences, Telltale Games is the generally regarded as king of the genre. Their episodic titles, such as The Walking Dead and The Wolf Among Us, show the evolution of ‘limited interactivity’ games from 90’s FMV crap into something that combines genuinely enthralling storytelling, beautiful looks and agonizing moral choices.

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Out of all of Telltale’s episodic games, Game of Thrones is the best and probably the most cinematic. The very limited user interaction in no way detracts from how much enjoyment can be gained from playing it. It’s also one of the best games ever made when it comes to watching someone else playing it - and lets face it, everyone loves Game of Thrones

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Stick on GoT and let your non-gaming partner enjoy what feels like an actual episode from the TV show, but one where you can both decide which biting responses characters can throw at each other - and who lives or dies.

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3. Life is Strange

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Dontnod Entertainment proved that Telltale doesn’t have a total monopoly on episodic, cinematic games with Life is Strange, one of the greatest examples of interactive storytelling in recent years.

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The story of teenager Max Caulfield’s return to her Oregon hometown and her discovery that she can rewind time in order to alter events is an enthralling, beautiful tale with some truly jaw-dropping moments. More interactive than Telltale’s offerings, Life is Strange brilliantly mixes puzzles, moral decision making and one of greatest, most compelling stories in gaming. And despite its subject matter, you don’t have to be a teenage girl to enjoy LiS. Its appeal really is universal.

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Non-gamers can enjoy watching each Twilight-zone like episode while simultaneously chipping in with their opinion on what responses to give, as well as offering solutions to puzzles. Additionally, LiS’s simple control system makes it a good game to use the '30 minutes each' two-player method - a great way to introduce newbies to using controllers. 

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Buy Life is Strange here

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4. D4: Dark Dreams Don't Die

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God bless you, Japan, for the incredible number of weird and wonderful games you’ve bestowed upon the world. And with D4: Dark Dreams Don’t Die, you’ve given us one of the best. Originally published by Microsoft Studios for the Xbox One, it thankfully arrived on the PC in April this year.

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While still more of a cinematic experience than a 'traditional' game, D4 does have a greater number of interactive elements than similar episodic titles. You may spend the first ten minutes of D4 wondering what the hell is going on, but it soon starts to come together - at which point you’ll appreciate what a good story lies behind the all the cat references and hilarious weirdness so typical in Japanese games. 

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D4 does consist of an awful lot of quick time events and not many sections where two players can collaborate, but for sheer entertainment value it’s one of the best games available. The whole thing is like fantastic Manga-esque TV series - it almost feels as if it’s been designed with observers in mind. A word of warning: it may be great, but the two released episodes are fairly short and D4 features one of the most annoying characters I’ve ever seen in video games. When you play it, y o u ’ l l………….k n o w ………… w h o ………I………m e a n.

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5. Sherlock Holmes: Crimes and Punishments

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If your partner enjoys more cerebral pursuits, or is simply a fan of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s work, then Sherlock Holmes: Crimes and Punishments, is a great title to introduce them to the joys of PC gaming. 

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SH:CaP manages to perfect that difficult mechanic which so many other detective games slip up on; it gives the player just the right amount of freedom in order to solve the crimes. In certain similar titles where the protagonist is a detective, there are usually only so many options available when it comes to the actual investigating. This can lead to cases being solved quickly through simple trial and error. If, on the other hand, there are absolutely loads of locations, objects, characters, plot devices, etc., then the whole thing can get a bit overwhelming. SHCaP gets the balance exactly right. 

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Great puzzles, six separate cases and some authentic characters all come together to make this a great title to play with a non-gamer. You even have to make some moral choice decisions now and again. Solve each mystery as a team to figure out whodunnit and impress your other half with some Holmes-like deducing. Although, try not to shout “THE GAME IS AFOOT!” every time you find a new clue, as this wears thin very quickly, apparently.

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Buy Sherlock Holmes: Crimes and Punishments here

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Imagine this nightmare scenario: you’ve been on a couple of dates with someone who seems to be the very definition of your perfect partner. They’re everything you’ve ever wanted in a person and in your mind you’re already thinking of baby names. Things have been going great but, on the third date, the subject of hobbies finally comes up. You explain to your future wife/husband that you have a burning passion for all things video games, particularly on the PC, at which point the Jennifer Lawrence/Channing Tatum lookalike responds with:

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“Oh, errrmmm… I don’t really play computer games. I’ve played Angry Birds, does that count?”

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Before you decide it’s not going to work and resign yourself to living out the rest of your existence as a crazy cat lady/weird loner, just remember that there are some titles available on the PC which can be enjoyed by people who still think computers are only used for spreadsheets and the internet.

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The following list is comprised of PC games which can be enjoyed by non-gamers. Some of them are easy for newbies to play themselves, while others require less direct interaction and are simply fun to watch.

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So, should you ever face the (admittedly unlikely) scenario above, then there's no need to roll out the “sorry you’ll never have grandkids” speech to your parents again. Just consult this list and you may be able to turn that almost perfect partner into a gamer.

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E3 2015 Announces LEGO: Marvel's Avengers - Coming Winter 2015 https://www.gameskinny.com/e8mjk/e3-2015-announces-lego-marvels-avengers-coming-winter-2015 https://www.gameskinny.com/e8mjk/e3-2015-announces-lego-marvels-avengers-coming-winter-2015 Wed, 24 Jun 2015 20:40:32 -0400 Courtney Gamache

If you're familiarized with LEGO games, you might want to look foward to this new addition in the franchise, where our favorite super hero team is back again to kick some Chitauri around the city of LEGO New York.

Similar to LEGO: Marvel Super Heroes

You might be wondering what makes this game different from LEGO: Marvel Super Heroes. Well first thing to know is that this is the first LEGO game based on a super hero movie, and that this game includes real voice-tracks, taken from the original Avengers movie. It's comparibly very similar in the fact that there are over 150 characters upon the roster, which happens to not include the costume options. You'll have the ability to form a core team with the super heros of your choice.

There's no "I" in Team

One of the great features about LEGO: Marvel's Avengers is the emphasis on teamwork, and utilizing it within this new game. There will be combat combos between characters, while also adding multiple characteristics that pertain to the specific characters. An example would include the electric suit Black Widow possesses in the movie, Avengers: Age of Ultron, and also the firearms she uses in the original Avengers. Like with other LEGO games, this will offer local co-op where you can team up with a friend and perform said combos together.

It's a LEGO Game, Right?

As with most previous LEGO games, certain characters will have abilities in-game that are special to them. This was previously seen in LEGO: Harry Potter Years 1-4, LEGO: Harry Potter Years 5-7, LEGO: Lord of the Rings, and LEGO: The Hobbit. In LEGO: Lord of the Rings, Legolas had a special ability to shoot arrows into holds and swing upon them. This is also seen in LEGO: Marvel's Avengers, where Hawkeye can shoot arrows into holds for himself and his teammates to swing on. 

There will also be an open-world game option as previously seen in LEGO: Marvel Super Heros, where side missions are plenty and characters have stand-by animations. You'll be able to adventure through the streets of New York, aiding to wipe up the Chitauri scum.

Tell me the Consoles!

According to Brickipedia, that LEGO: Marvel's Avengers will be available for the: Xbox One, Xbox 360, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, Wii U, Nintendo 3DS, PC, and Steam. They really spoiled us with these options, giving everyone a fair shot at playing this game on the console of their choice.

Hurry and Take My LEGO Bits!

Although there is a long wait for this new Marvel LEGO addition, the most recent game, LEGO: Jurassic World, became available on Steam June 11th. The game covers Jurassic Park, Jurassic Park: The Lost World, Jurassic Park III, and Jurassic World. The characters span over all the movies, letting us re-live the iconic soundtrack, with voice-tracks taken from the movies. In the meantime you'll be able to find this game on your Xbox One, Xbox 360, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita, Wii U, Nintendo 3DS, PC, and of course Steam

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The 10 Best Video Games Based on Movies https://www.gameskinny.com/dqhfa/the-10-best-video-games-based-on-movies https://www.gameskinny.com/dqhfa/the-10-best-video-games-based-on-movies Mon, 08 Jun 2015 07:28:27 -0400 Curtis Dillon

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So there you have it, 10 of the best video games based on movies. Of course, there are many we didn't get to, such as X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Terminator 2: Judgement Day, King Kong, Batman NES, etc. (See how I managed to work in a few honorable mentions there?)

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So what do you guys think the best games based on movies are? Do you agree with the games listed here? Or do you think Batman begins was a load of crap? Well, let us know in the comments below! You know you want to.

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Anything By Lego

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OK, so this is a little bit of a cop-out but I felt that the Lego games deserve a shout-out. I could easily have chosen Lego Star Wars, Lego Harry Potter, Lego Lord of The Rings, Lego Indiana Jones or Lego Pirates of The Caribbean, however they're all pretty similar, so it would have been very hard to choose. TT Games always do a wonderful job with the movie properties it takes on and each game manages to feel authentic, despite having the Lego look. Any Lego movie game is worth playing and soon you will be able to get your hands on Lego Jurassic World and Lego Marvel's Avengers, so get ready for more movie awesomeness!

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Ghostbusters: The Video Game (PS3/360)

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Acting as a true sequel to Ghostbusters II, the game takes place 2 years after the movie and features most of the original cast reprising their iconic roles. This game was exactly what it needed to be: "a love letter to Ghostbuster fans," to quote Greg Miller of IGN. The game received great reviews and rightfully so, it was an incredibly faithful adaption and better than any true third movie would have been.

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Disney's Aladdin (SNES)

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Coming out a year after the classic movie, Disney's Aladdin was a very pretty 2D side scroller and a great platformer. Back in a time when every game was a 2D side scroller, and every popular movie got a tie-in, Aladdin stood out for being legitimately good and is still pretty fun today.

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Batman Begins (PS2/Xbox/Gamecube)

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This game will probably be the most surprising, but Batman Begins is incredibly underrated. For reasons I can't comprehend, this movie tie-in wasn't well received when it came out but it had so many fantastic features. For example, you could intimidate you enemies, scaring them or taking them out 1 by 1, making the remaining goons more afraid of you, until the last guy sat crying in the corner.

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You could also hide in the shadows, hang from wires, stealth attack and drive the batmobile. Importantly, Batman Begins perfectly captured the feeling of the movie, a fundamental necessity that most movie tie-ins fail to deliver. It's truly a shame the Arkham series never adopted the intimidation system from this game.

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Toy Story 2: Buzz Lightyear To The Rescue (PS1)

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This one may comes as a surprise to many but Toy Story 2 on PS1 was a very fun game. Playing as the awesome Buzz Lightyear, you get to navigate various nostalgic locations from the Toy Story 2 movie like Andy's bedroom, Al's Toy Barn, and the airport. Each level had numerous missions and you could travel between each location as you please in order to gain more stars and progress.

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The Godfather (PS2/PS3/Xbox/360)

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The Godfather game was a truly amazing gangster simulator. Coming in the years between GTA: San Andreas and GTA IV, The Godfather scratched our perpetual itch to cause crime and mayhem. But in all seriousness, the game used retold the story of the original movie but from a new perspective and featured great gameplay mechanics, including interrogation, fun combat, and smooth driving. The sequel was pretty great too.

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GoldenEye 007 (N64)

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There isn't much to say about this game, considering how iconic and beloved it is. For many, GoldenEye epitomizes the days of the N64. If nothing else, this game perfected local multiplayer and is played to this day.

"},{"image":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/7/d/c/7dc0df3d3df729b8a798503ce0b515f3.jpg","thumb":"http://s3.amazonaws.com/gameskinnyop/7/d/c/tiny_7dc0df3d3df729b8a798503ce0b515f3.jpg","type":"slide","id":"69039","description":"

The Warriors (PS2/PSP/Xbox)

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Another somewhat forgotten gem, The Warriors was an incredible game from Rockstar Games. Based on the cult classic movie, The Warriors came out of nowhere but what a game it was. If you've ever played Rockstar's Bully, then you know exactly how The Warriors plays. The two games were built on the same engine and it was a really fun engine for combat. The Warriors was defined by its fighting and marked the first time in a game that I was able to pick up a brick or a glass bottle and hit enemies with them. There were many amazing moments in this game, from the blackout to the art gallery fight and every crazy moment in between. 

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Spider-Man 2 (PS2/Gamecube/Xbox)

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Potentially the best Spider-Man game ever made, Spider-Man 2 was loosely based on the movie of the same name. The open-world was full of things to do and, most importantly, fun to web-sling around. I mean, you can't tell me you didn't climb to the top of the Empire State Building, leap off, rush towards the ground and shoot a web at the last second. Then repeat. It was pure fun, something other Spidey games have often failed to replicate. The only other title that could be argued better than this, although is not a movie tie-in, was the PS1 Spider-Man classic. We deserve another great Spider-Man game, it's been 11 years.

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The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape From Butcher Bay (Xbox)

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Serving as a prequel to the 2004 movie, The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape From Butcher Bay was met with critical acclaim. As one of the highest rated games on this list, TCOR drew comparisons to Metal Gear Solid, Splinter Cell, Far Cry and Half-Life - not bad. The graphics were great, the gameplay fun and well balanced between action and stealth, and Vin Diesel's voice acting was awesome. Diesel is a huge gamer himself, and he always impresses when he gets behind the mic.

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Video games based on movies are usually disasters. However, there is the odd instance in which the game turns out surprisingly great. Today we're going to countdown 10 of the best video games based on movies. Let's check out those rare gems!

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Top Reasons Why LEGO Video Games Continue to be the Best Games For Your Children https://www.gameskinny.com/ep1n4/top-reasons-why-lego-video-games-continue-to-be-the-best-games-for-your-children https://www.gameskinny.com/ep1n4/top-reasons-why-lego-video-games-continue-to-be-the-best-games-for-your-children Fri, 10 Apr 2015 09:41:38 -0400 Kate Reynolds

When I think about my future children, as a gamer, I always imagine all the games I can introduce my children to. The Final Fantasy VII HD version that might have been made by then, Mario Kart, and even Halo are all titles that come to mind. Yet when I really get into the nitty gritty - thinking about age-appropriateness and enjoyable gameplay - I know that I'll be buying every new LEGO game that hits the market. 

Toy Tie-Ins: Building Games Are Great for Creativity

It's rare that a video game is based on a toy franchises, and a toy franchise with potential educational benefits no less.  Many scientists have argued that construction toys, including LEGOs, can help children with motors skills and creative thinking. In Parenting Science, Gwen Dewar Ph.D. argues that

It makes sense that copying models would improve a child’s ability to analyze spatial relationships...If you are going to spend money on toys, construction toys seem like a wise investment.

Assuming that children playing LEGO video games will want to play more with LEGO toys, parent's get a built in system for enhancing a child's spatial skills, at the very least. 

Also, given that small children are very bad at assembling LEGOs without help (I learned this from my younger cousins last Christmas) it also provides parents with more opportunities to play with their children. 

Not all LEGO games are two player, and not all parents are comfortable playing video games with their kids, but anyone can play with LEGO blocks. Just as long as you don't turn into evil Wil Ferrell from The Lego Movie

Popular Culture Tie-Ins Mean Harry Potter is Great for Both Literacy and Motor Skills

When kids get obsessed with something, say Cinderella, they'll want to watch the movie over and over again, play dress-up, own the toys, and play the video game. The problem being that many video games based on other intellectual property are...less than ideal. 

With LEGO adaptations, you can always expect a fun (and PG rated) game with solid mechanics. LEGO Harry Potter, LEGO Indiana Jones, and LEGO Star Wars offer players a chance to have an adventure in a light-hearted version of their favorite universe. 

For a multimedia franchise like Batman, the LEGO universe offers an out-of-continuity experience that offers a nice juxtaposition to Christopher Nolan's gritty trilogy. There are age-appropriate Batman cartoons, and through LEGO there can be age appropriate Batman games. Everybody wins!

LEGO Games Are Easy and Enjoyable

When I was growing up, I was terrible at video games. What drove me to role-playing games like Final Fantasy VII and Legend of Legaia was my lack of fine motor skills. 

I share this because most children are terrible at video games to a certain point. As an adult gamer, I might be able to hold the high scores in all the games my children play... until they hit puberty. The LEGO games are well-geared towards the capabilities of children, instead of catering to skilled adults. 

Children can play LEGO games without getting too frustrated, and even non-gamer parents will also be able to play and have fun. You still won't be able to beat all the challenges the first time through, but there's never a point in a LEGO game where you'll think it's impossible to continue. More fun than frustration has a universal appeal. 

Continued Innovation

With the announcement of LEGO Dimensions this week, it's clear that LEGO intends to join the toys-to-life genre debuted by Skylanders and Disney Infinite

This new game manages to tie in new toys that your children will want to combine with their other tie-ins to multiple cinematic universes. And as usual, there will be fun gameplay. 

Will that be enough to rival Disney? We'll have to wait for the sales to know for sure. I can name at least five amazing LEGO games off the top of my head - but I can't say the same for Disney games. 

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The Past, Present, and Future of Harry Potter Games https://www.gameskinny.com/xefr2/the-past-present-and-future-of-harry-potter-games https://www.gameskinny.com/xefr2/the-past-present-and-future-of-harry-potter-games Mon, 03 Mar 2014 19:15:54 -0500 Lauren Puga

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With a fictional world as expansive and fantastical as the Harry Potter universe, there's really no limit to what this potential MMORPG could do.

Let's hope it happens. 

You can read more about Harry Potter Online and show your support here.  

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Wonderbook: Book of Spells, Book of Potions (2012, 2013)

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The Wonderbook series is another part of J.K. Rowling’s collaboration with Sony. Using the PlayStation 3 Eye, a seemingly blank book is transformed into a magical pop-up book on screen. Players interact with the game by turning pages of the Wonderbook and using the PlayStation Move controller like a wand.

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Things worth keeping: Immersive spells and potion making

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Pottermore (2012)

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When Pottermore was first announced, fans thought they were finally getting the immersive Hogwarts Experience they’d been dreaming of. A direct collaboration with author J.K. Rowling, Pottermore is more of an online experience than a video game and is designed as an accompaniment to the Harry Potter books. Key features include getting sorted by the Sorting Hat, dueling, potion making, and conversing with fans in virtual versions of the Great Hall and house common rooms.

Things worth keeping: The Sorting Hat, sense of community 

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LEGO Harry Potter (2010, 2011)

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The LEGO Harry Potter series is without a doubt, the high point in a history of mediocre Harry Potter games. Following in the footsteps of Lego Star Wars, LEGO Batman and LEGO Indiana Jones, LEGO Harry Potter stays true to the main story while staying lighthearted and silly. The game covers all eight movies in just two games, offering an accelerated gameplay full of playable characters, HP landmarks and LEGO madness.

Things worth keeping: Sense of humor, genuine fun

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Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Pt 1 & 2 (2010, 2011)

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Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows marked another significant change in the franchise’s game mechanics – abandoning the old adventure style to become more of a third-person shooter and stealth game. While both games stayed mostly faithful to the movie’s plot, those bits were often told through cinematic clips rather than gameplay.  The second installment was an improvement on the first, featuring the ability to apparate.

Things worth keeping: Nice graphics, shooter elements, apparation

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/cf2e9b80ca78552fd1ce117c90c36937.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_cf2e9b80ca78552fd1ce117c90c36937.jpg","type":"slide","id":"34777","description":"

Harry Potter and the Half -Blood Prince (2009)

\n

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince stuck to the open-world style of the previous game with a few new added features. Potion making, an important part of the Harry Potter world, was integrated as a fun and challenging mini-game. Flying was re-introduced in the form of timed races, and dueling was made much more intuitive.

Things worth keeping: Potion making, dueling 

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/764b80f25194a6236cbd6b57580f1ab1.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_764b80f25194a6236cbd6b57580f1ab1.jpg","type":"slide","id":"34787","description":"

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007)

\n

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix is one of my personal favorites and the closest thing we got to a true open-world Harry Potter game. The school itself was a faithful adaption of what we saw in the movies, complete with talking paintings and moving staircases. The game was still story based but players had more freedom in terms of exploration. You even got your own copy of Maurader’s map to show you around.

Things worth keeping: Open-world gameplay, talking portraits, Maurader’s map

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/5d1bd60c4a57badcf59449cdca21a3c6.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_5d1bd60c4a57badcf59449cdca21a3c6.jpg","type":"slide","id":"34775","description":"

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005)

\n

In terms of both the book and movie, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire marked a dark transition for the Harry Potter series. In response, EA gave the game adaption a much more ominous feel than past releases. The addition of cinematic scenes kept the story paced all while staying true to the original source material. They also ditched the free-reign style for a more linear gameplay – causing some fans to complain that the installment felt dumbed down.

\n

Things worth keeping: Cinematics, atmosphere

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/7b4b3ce77cde5460e80fb094e6f8f2a4.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_7b4b3ce77cde5460e80fb094e6f8f2a4.jpg","type":"slide","id":"34774","description":"

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004)

\n

Taking cues from Harry Potter: Quidditch World Cup, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban allowed players to control someone other than Harry.  Hermione and Ron were finally playable and each came with their own specialized powers. Physically casting spells was omitted however, as the game went for a more point-and-click style of combat. This game focused a lot on collecting random items, with the main plot serving no real purpose.

Things worth keeping: Nothing

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/45164418e6358e8fc3fd157ae045051d.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_45164418e6358e8fc3fd157ae045051d.jpg","type":"slide","id":"34780","description":"

Harry Potter: Quidditch World Cup (2003)

\n

With no new movie to be released in 2003, EA was forced to come up with a new type of Harry Potter game to meet their yearly quota. Harry Potter: Quidditch World Cup, a sports game based on the fictional competition of the same name, was a welcome change that met generally positive reviews. Players could choose from any of the four houses and play as characters like Draco Malfoy and Victor Krum as they played their way to the World Cup.

Things worth keeping: Quidditch matches, different playable characters

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/173871f5cd8e8486fb7bf14c8673aba6.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_173871f5cd8e8486fb7bf14c8673aba6.jpg","type":"slide","id":"34776","description":"

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002)

\n

The second installment of the Harry Potter game series was a vast improvement from the first. Flying was more developed, and the inclusion of a fully realized Diagon Alley and explorable Hogwarts gave players freedom that was severely lacking in the first game. The game’s set up made more sense as well - Harry learned spells in class, which he could later use to solve puzzles and in duels.

\n

Things worth keeping: Explorable worlds, spells, flying

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/cd208c55a57f5fe04dfc3543810f4009.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_cd208c55a57f5fe04dfc3543810f4009.jpg","type":"slide","id":"34779","description":"

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (2001)

\n

The first entry into the realm of Harry Potter gaming was decent, but simply being the first warrants some merit. It was amazing to see details from the books and movies in an interactive space and being able to converse with your favorite characters for the first time. Players played through the main story and various side missions, all while earning house points. Flying and Quidditch were also explored, but as minor details at best.

Things worth keeping: Attention to detail, house points

"},{"image":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/3e35529cb3892cae56d33e48e339d7da.jpg","thumb":"http://images.gameskinny.com/gameskinny/tiny_3e35529cb3892cae56d33e48e339d7da.jpg","type":"slide","id":"34786","description":"

The Harry Potter series may be over, but its fandom is anything but dead. After seven books, eight movies, and a theme park, fans of JK Rowling’s wizarding world are still hungry for more.  

\n
Could an MMO be what they’re looking for?
\n

Bio-Hazard Entertainment is currently working on Harry Potter Online, an MMORPG that, with enough support, could earn a full-license from Warner Bros. As of now details are few, but the proposed game would allow players to choose between different schools of magic, master professions such as herbology and potions, and participate in duels. 

With so many Harry Potter games already in existence, there’s a lot the Bio-Hazard team could take away from. As a gamer and hardcore Potterhead, I’ll take a look back at Harry Potter’s colorful video game past to see what has (and hasn’t) worked when adapting the wizarding world for gamers' screens. 

"}]]]>
How Video Games Almost Bankrupt and Saved Lego https://www.gameskinny.com/67z2h/how-video-games-almost-bankrupt-and-saved-lego https://www.gameskinny.com/67z2h/how-video-games-almost-bankrupt-and-saved-lego Fri, 10 Jan 2014 14:08:35 -0500 Chris Hendricks

Almost everyone has heard of Lego. There are more Lego minifigures in the world than there are people. In fact, there are roughly 65 Lego pieces for every person in the world. Alongside Hasbro and Mattel, Lego is the fastest growing toy company in the world. Heck, Lego is still the world's largest producer of rubber tires (more than 300 million made every year)! Although it is still too early in the year for raw sales numbers for 2013, 2012 saw Lego bring in north of $750 million. Things however have not always been so cheerful for the loveable brick makers from Denmark. As recently as 2004, the entire company almost filed for bankruptcy. 

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/moslive/article-1234465/When-Lego-lost-head--toy-story-got-happy-ending.html

How did it go so wrong?

In the late '90s, Lego saw an influx in sales when it reissued their license with Star Wars to accompany the prequel trilogy that would be coming out in the following years. They also signed an agreement to produce Harry Potter sets as well. Initial sales for the sets were booming the summers the movies came out, but declined heavily in the years that no movies were released. Also, Lego had a policy of owning, rather than leasing all of their buildings around the world, and was pushing for a global market of their products. This included clothing and furniture; essentially a way of life. 

They also had a sizeable amount of money tied into their in-house video game production. A lot of money. When they first reported losses in 2002, there were rumblings of a shakeup of Lego's core strategies. Private corporations began smelling the chum in the water and the pressure was on for Lego to prove that it could right the ship. Rumors of Hasbro and Mattel trying to buy out Lego began surfacing and there were questions if Lego would survive. Those concerns grew exponentially when at the end of 2003 Lego reported losses of close to $1 Billion. That's with a "B."

How Lego Survived

Massive restructuring and a hard look inwards saw Lego return to what made them so popular in the first place. Simply putting new product on the shelf every year was no longer going to work. Lego got rid of every non-essential part of their company and focused solely on the innovation and production of quality new products. Millions are now put into marketing and research before a new set is even produced. A big part of the change was Lego selling their video game division, opting to have outside developers create games with the proper licenses. 

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/moslive/article-1234465/When-Lego-lost-head--toy-story-got-happy-ending.html

All of these things cut their costs enough to see them slowly begin to rise out from their debt. Oddly enough, however, consistent sales by their now third-party developed video games had a huge impact on the turn-around. The game that had the most immediate impact? 2005's Lego Star Wars: The Video Game. Although the Harry Potter games had been released years earlier, the release of Revenge of the Sith saw fans wanting anything they could get their hands on. Lego saw continued success the following years with more Star WarsIndiana Jones, Batman, Lord of the Rings, and Marvel Super Heroes games. All of these games sold collectively more than 50 million copies and were/are considered quality games within the industry. Also, those games tapped into a previously unused market for Lego, gamers.

With a flock of new people now coming into the stores to buy sets based off of video games they had played, Lego found new life and is still being supported by them today. By looking inward, they were able to see what they needed to change and how they could better utilize their resources. Smartly, they didn't rid themselves from the gaming industry, but rather let people who knew more about it make the important decisions. And we have all benefitted because of that.

And never one to rest on their laurels, Lego has already announced plans for a Lego: The Hobbit game slated to come out later this year. Expect it to do as well as its' LotR counterparts and to have a game for all the films that are released.

What does this mean for the future?

The success Tt Games has had with all of their licensed Lego games is not shocking, but it is still funny that a part of their company that Lego first saw as a liability became a big reason for their reemergence in the toy market as well as being a staple of it moving forward. Gamers are an eclectic and well versed group of people and they are obviously nerds as well as many being collectors. Many of them (us) love to own anything we can that is associated with a game we love. The fact that in this case the extra goodies happen to be little plastic bricks that we can then take to make whatever we want is just an awesome bonus. 

It is not too surprising that the games ended up doing as well as they did, but I think it speaks to the influence we as a community can have on wholly different industries. Not to say that we are the only reason Lego still exists today in its' current form, but you can be assured that gamers played a significant role. As the gaming industry grows and more franchises are realizing the powerful machine that can be video games, it is finally refreshing to see other industries, and to an extent the "common" consumer show us the respect that I think we rightfully deserve. 

So, the next time you walk past a Lego store or see a set in pieces in your closet, have pride in the fact that if you have purchased or played a Lego video game in the past 10 years, you are directly responsible for saving a multi-billion dollar company. And you haven't played any of them yet, what are you waiting for?

http://www.qualitylogoproducts.com/blog/lego-wins-fans-young-and-old/

]]>
How Video Games Almost Bankrupt and Ultimately Saved Lego https://www.gameskinny.com/7aot7/how-video-games-almost-bankrupt-and-ultimately-saved-lego https://www.gameskinny.com/7aot7/how-video-games-almost-bankrupt-and-ultimately-saved-lego Fri, 10 Jan 2014 14:08:34 -0500 Chris Hendricks

Almost everyone has heard of Lego. There are more minifigures in the world than there are people. In fact, there are roughly 65 Lego pieces for every person in the world. Alongside Hasbro and Mattel, Lego is the fastest growing toy company in the world. Heck, Lego is still the world's largest producer of rubber tires (more than 300 million made every year)!

Although it is still too early in the year for raw sales numbers for 2013, 2012 saw Lego bring in north of $750 million. Things however have not always been so cheerful for the loveable brick makers from Denmark. As recently as 2004, the entire company almost filed for bankruptcy. 

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/moslive/article-1234465/When-Lego-lost-head--toy-story-got-happy-ending.html

How did it go so wrong?

In the late '90s, Lego saw an influx in sales when it reissued their license with Star Wars to accompany the prequel trilogy that would be coming out in the following years. They also signed an agreement to produce Harry Potter sets as well.  Initial sales for the sets were booming the summers the movies came out, but declined heavily in the years that no movies were released. Also, Lego had a policy of owning, rather than leasing, all of their buildings around the world, and was pushing for a global market of their products. This included clothing and furniture; essentially, a way of life. 

They also had a sizeable amount of money tied into their in-house video game production. A lot of money. When they first reported losses in 2002, there were rumblings of a shakeup of Lego's core strategies. Private corporations began smelling the chum in the water and the pressure was on for Lego to prove that it could right the ship.

Rumors of Hasbro and Mattel trying to buy out Lego began surfacing and there were questions if Lego would survive. Those concerns grew exponentially when, at the end of 2003, Lego reported losses of close to $1 billion, with a "B."

How Lego Survived

Massive restructuring and a hard look inwards saw Lego return to what made them so popular in the first place. Simply putting new product on the shelf every year was no longer going to work.

Lego got rid of every non-essential part of their company and focused solely on the innovation and production of quality new products. Millions are now put into marketing and research before a new set is even produced. A big part of the change was Lego selling their video game division, opting to have outside developers create games with the proper licenses. 

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/moslive/article-1234465/When-Lego-lost-head--toy-story-got-happy-ending.html

All of these things cut their costs enough for them slowly begin to rise out from their debt. Oddly enough, however, consistent sales by their now third-party developed video games had a huge impact on the turn-around. The game that had the most immediate impact? 2005's Lego Star Wars: The Video Game.

Although the Harry Potter games had been released years earlier, the release of Revenge of the Sith gave fans a craving for anything they could get their hands on. Lego saw continued success the following years with more Star WarsIndiana Jones, Batman, Lord of the Rings, and Marvel Super Heroes games. All of these games sold collectively more than 50 million copies and were/are considered quality games within the industry. Also, those games tapped into a previously unused market for Lego, gamers.

With a flock of new people now coming into the stores to buy sets based off of video games they had played, Lego found new life and is still being supported by them today. By looking inward, they were able to see what they needed to change and how they could better utilize their resources. Smartly, they didn't completely bail on the gaming industry, but rather let people who knew more about it make the important decisions. And we have all benefitted because of that.

And never one to rest on their laurels, Lego has already announced plans for a Lego: The Hobbit game slated to come out later this year. Expect it to do as well as its' LotR counterparts and to have a game for all the films that are released.

What does this mean for the future?

The success Tt Games has had with all of their licensed Lego games is not shocking, but it is still funny their company, which Lego first saw as a liability, became a big reason for their reemergence in the toy market as well as a staple of it moving forward. Gamers are an eclectic and well versed group of people, and they are obviously nerds as well as collectors. Many of them (us) love to own anything we can that is associated with a game we love. The fact that in this case, the extra goodies happen to be little plastic bricks that we can then take to make whatever we want, is just an awesome bonus. 

It is not too surprising that the games ended up doing as well as they did, but I think it speaks to the influence we as a community can have on wholly different industries. Not to say that we are the only reason Lego still exists today in its current form, but you can be assured that we played a significant role. As the gaming industry grows and more franchises are realizing the powerful machine that is video games, it is refreshing to see other industries, and to an extent the "common" consumer, show us the respect that I think we rightfully deserve. 

So, the next time you walk past a Lego store or see a set in pieces in your closet, have pride in the fact that if you have purchased or played a Lego video game in the past 10 years; you are directly responsible for saving a multi-billion dollar company. And you haven't played any of them yet, what are you waiting for?

http://www.qualitylogoproducts.com/blog/lego-wins-fans-young-and-old/

]]>
A Gamer's Essentials - Laptop Edition https://www.gameskinny.com/39sri/a-gamers-essentials-laptop-edition https://www.gameskinny.com/39sri/a-gamers-essentials-laptop-edition Thu, 19 Sep 2013 10:33:00 -0400 Courtney Gamache

As my gaming has developed over the past years, I've realized what type of equipment I like to use. Not only does it increase my gaming abilities, but also comfort-wise I'm able to spend longer times on my laptop gaming instead of having to move.

Winter's coming, pick up some USB hand warmers

In the early days of Fall up here in New England, I find comfort in my USB hand warmers picked up at ThinkGeek. They require two USB ports and have High and Low settings. Not only do they look adorable, and you won't have frigid hands while using a gaming controller or typing on your computer. You'll be able to have full function of all fingers and thumbs while wearing them, just mind the cord. I'm not sure if they're still sold or not at ThinkGeek, but it was around $15 on sale when I purchased it.

A good gaming controller

When you're used to console gaming like myself, you might want to invest into a gaming controller that mimics PlayStation controllers. I've been using a Logitech GamePad F310 to play Portal and Portal 2 and it works wonderfully. Again, it uses a USB connection and you might have to sync it with your Steam games through the "Big Picture". Works great for Lego games as well, and the cord is a decent length. Purchased it at Amazon (which I usually shop at), for $20. 

 

Wireless Headset

With online gaming comes conversations with your fellow gamers. Whether it be through Skype, Twitch, or Teamspeak, you'll need some gear to hear your friends and so they can hear you. I picked up a decent headset this past year on Amazon, and the price was totally right. I'm a pretty loyal Logitech fan, so I bought the Logitech Wireless Headset H800. The reception is decent, and it uses a micro USB, so you'll hardly notice it. Plus, it has internal storage for the micro so you can't lose it. It's about $65 on sale at Amazon, but is cheaper than other Logitech Wireless Headsets.

Laptop riser

When you're using a laptop as your basic computer, take care of it. Using a laptop riser can make it easier to type while also avoiding overheating problems. This is a big problem with laptops while running games such as Sims 3 and Portal. They make the laptop very hot and they tend to overheat. I picked one up at Walmart recently that's made of metal and has height adjustments. Definitely worth the money, and I'd be lost without it. The plastic ones crack too often, and they aren't mobile, while you can just grab the metal one and take it with you to a LAN party. The one I got is a Rolodex ROL82410, and runs around $24.

Laptop cooler

Last but not least, a laptop cooler. You'll probably want to look into this if you're relying solely on a laptop, but I don't recommend any plastic ones. I've broken two of them in the past year because their cables aren't very reliable. They use USB connections and run off the laptop's power, but the plastic ones are pretty useless. I'd go for a laptop riser + laptop cooler bundle all in one, but those can run you about $50. Maybe in the future I'll bust out the wallet and go for it, but for now I'll go without the cooler.

These are my essentials needed for any time-extensive game playing while also hanging with my friends. If you have any other opinions or items I left out, please comment. I'd love to hear about what you think!

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