Portal 2 Articles RSS Feed | GameSkinny.com Portal 2 RSS Feed on GameSkinny.com https://www.gameskinny.com/ en Launch Media Network This Was the Best Decade in Gaming History, and I Can Prove It https://www.gameskinny.com/w33ve/this-was-the-best-decade-in-gaming-history-and-i-can-prove-it https://www.gameskinny.com/w33ve/this-was-the-best-decade-in-gaming-history-and-i-can-prove-it Sun, 29 Dec 2019 14:27:56 -0500 Ty Arthur

The decade is coming to a close, and while there was controversy — and a few franchises flopped  the last 10 years provided some of the best moments in the history of gaming.

If you lived through the 2010s, you witnessed new, powerful console launches, new developers knocking it out of the park, and new, exciting tech releases from the ill-fated Kinect to the still burgeoning VR field.

All of that and more led to an unforgettable 10 years in gaming that rivaled much of what came before. Don't believe me? Let's take a look back at the industry's defining achievements over the past 10 years.  

The Early 2010s

Certain moments will live forever. Lady Gaga's meat outfit. Rebecca Black's Friday. Kony 2012. The color of that stupid dress. Marriage equality. "But her emails." Leo finally getting that damn Oscar. 

For me, the decade began in earnest when I put GLaDOS into a potato in Portal 2. The combination of humor and disturbing horror sold it as much as the game's top-notch voice acting and rock solid gameplay. That overall package had me sitting in awe, thinking: "Did modern video games just become amazing right this second?" 

Aside from the hilarious legacy of Portal's sequel (which itself will never be a follow-up since Valve sadly can't count to three), the 2010s kicked off in earnest with notable returns from major series featuring big changes. Mass Effect 2 ditched the extraneous RPG elements and somehow came out better for it; Dead Space 2 ramped up the horror and gore of the first game; and, of course, Starcraft 2: Wings Of Liberty arrived with a makeover and revamped multiplayer.

The early 2010s proudly brought the gaming universe a re-tooled horde mode in Gears of War 3, and it's one that stood the test of time. Aside from still holding the title of "one of the least toxic cooperative multiplayer modes" ever made, horde in Gears of War 3 remains the gold standard of multiplayer. Horde is one of the primary reasons why fans return to the Gears series even after the IP switched developers.

While those big-name AAA franchises made their marks, Minecraft became a phenomenon. Mojang's smash hit created an enduring legacy that can't be denied, even if the survival/open-world LEGO mashup has been endlessly emulated. Somehow the pop phenomenon still has hundreds of millions of active players, showing Mojang's vision wasn't just a fluke. 

Between an insane number of skins, seeds, maps, and mods, Minecraft has to be one of the most expansive gaming experiences of all time, and it will probably still be up and running long after we are all dead and gone. As we move into the next decade, we're preparing for Minecraft Dungeons, which could possibly be a game we'll still be talking about in 10 years. Who knows?

      OK, maybe it wouldn't have been the worst
thing if we didn't know about this guy...

Another low-key title that had a bigger impact than many realize — though not Minecraft big — came in the horror genre. 

Amnesia: The Dark Descent kicked off the "defenseless" horror subgenre that has seen the likes of Outlast, Layers of Fear, and Alien: Isolation follow in its footsteps. Although the Amnesia series is now quaint when compared to what came after it, it brought the horror genre to the masses. Why? Because big-name streamers loved it.

Reaction videos to Amnesia's scarier scenes caught on like wildfire, and it's partly to thank for the sudden spike in video game streaming personalities in the early part of the decade. Without Amnesia, it's possible that the likes of PewDiePie and Markiplier might remain relatively unknown.

       It is an absolute tragedy that this didn't catch on.

Despite all of the unexpected successes, there were some "sure things" that ended up nosediving in the early part of the decade. Nintendo — normally a pillar of stability — saw the Wii U ultimately flop, even though the hardware itself had some fantastic applications.

If you haven't experienced Rayman Legends local multiplayer using both the Wii U pad and your television screen, then you missed out on a critical piece of amazing gaming history.

While the Wii U has been consigned to the dust bin, other parts of the early 2010 gaming landscape caught on like wildfire and still haven't gone out.

Though I point blank hated Skyrim, credit must be given where it's due. Bethesda captured the imagination of a generation with that particular Elder Scrolls entry, and Skyrim managed to remain popular enough to see re-release some dozen or so times across multiple consoles throughout the decade.

Without question, Skyrim played a large role in the success of the 2010 console cycle, but it had an even bigger impact on the PC landscape. Simply put, Skyrim is the king of mods, and has born an entire generation of modders that have created some truly fantastic experiences. 

To date, Skyrim has more than 56,000 downloads available on Nexus Mods. Yeah, a lot of them are nude mods, but between the total conversion mods and extremely clever gameplay tweaks, Skyrim can be an amazing game with the right modding.

The mod effect went well past Bethesda's fantasy baby this decade. Other open world games like Red Dead Redemption 2 are getting a slew of mods, but everything from XCOM to the Resident Evil 2 remake are finding extra play time through some pretty genius mods.

While story took a back seat to open-world exploration in Skyrim, storytelling as a whole wasn't left in the dust in this early period of the decade. Plenty of games weren't afraid to go with more mature or unexpected themes, from the devastating opening of The Last Of Us to the mind-bending twist in Bioshock Infinite

Story rich or story lacking, open world or linear, the early part of the 10s was drowning in genre-defining games... but things would take a turn just a few years later. 

The Mid 2010s

         Telltale looking at Telltale and getting ready to pull the trigger       

Has a developer ever risen so quickly and then fallen so far as Telltale? The Wolf Among Us and the first season of The Walking Dead are still hallmarks of interactive storytelling, but sadly, the development team, under immense pressure, faced insurmountable hurdles.

A badly aging engine, lack of new ideas, and overspending on major franchises weighed the dev down by the time Game Of Thrones Season 1 ended. Sadly, things did not improve, and the company shuttered later in the decade. We never got to see the heights this style could have reached if material like Stranger Things, Hellraiser, or True Detective had been made available.

While the Telltale name is currently clawing back from the dead, it appears this new version of the company won't feature the same people (which may be a good thing) and will work on a much smaller scale. Will we ever get anything as compelling as Bigby's murder mystery or Clementine's journey to adulthood? Probably not, but at least we've still got our memories. 

       Goodbye old friend. You will be missed.

Another amazingly bittersweet moment arrived in April 2016 as the beloved Xbox 360 finally met its end. While Games With Gold is still offering up free titles each month and a handful of games are still hitting the platform, production on this console legend officially stopped. If you've still got a 360, be sure to keep hold of it -- because no more are being made! Microsoft managed to bring out the longest-running console cycle in gaming history, lasting more than 10 solid years. 

The next-gen got off to a rocky start not long before the 360 ceased production (remember the horror that was Assassin's Creed Unity?) but the decade's trend of disappointing trilogy conclusions with Dead Space 3 and Mass Effect 3 would come to a shattering and conclusive close with The Witcher 3.

Without question, The Witcher 3 put CD Projekt Red on the map and showed that an open-world RPG could be story-rich and offer more than just endless fetch quests and following map markers. Even more impressively, The Witcher 3 remains one of the very few titles to feature DLC that is easily as strong as the base game.

Considering the many amazing ladies of the series (oh, and Geralt too, I guess) just made the leap to a Netflix Original Series, it seems The Witcher franchise is going to live on for quite some time.

The same time period didn't just see the arrival of some truly great games it also saw a change in how games are developed and the ways in which developers interact with players.

Although the method had been around for some time, it was around the mid-2010s that Early Access started to become a vehicle for on-going development. 

Though Early Access has seen its fair share of hate and has been legitimately abused, it gave us titles as diverse and satisfying as Darkest Dungeon, Slime Rancher, and later, Subnautica. Early Access has shown that supporting developers along the way and allowing tweaks to be made from fan feedback can result in better-finished products.

      Should have called it Baldur's Wind Dale: Temple Of Elemental Torment.

Rising alongside Early Access, the crowd-funding revolution also emerged in the 2010s, giving us an amazing crop of old-school RPGs like Pillars of Eternity and Wasteland 2

Fans wanted classic isometric games utilizing tactical real-time-with-pause or turn-based combat, but publishers just weren't willing to take the risk. They couldn't see that nostalgia equals money. Kickstarter and Indiegogo stepped in.

While Obsidian and InXile got snapped up by Microsoft in 2018 and it would seem are now cranking out some very off-brand console titles we still had a good number of years where fans had the final say on what would get released in those instances.

Kickstarter would later grow to feature revitalized classics such as Shenmue 3 and the Castlevania-adjacent Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night. Whether you asked for a refund and still think its a scam or are eagerly playing along, Star Citizen showed just how massive a crowd funding campaign can become. Somehow its still earning crowd funding revenue, having raked in more than $250 million from fans who know what they want and are willing to pay to get it.

Outside the realm of the typical gaming sphere, a surprising new genre would emerge and make a bigger impact than anyone suspected: absurdist games meant entirely for Let's Plays, reaction vids, and water-cooler talk.

"Classics" like Goat Simulator and Octodad: Dadliest Catch saw gamers re-thinking what truly makes a game great, while also laying the foundation for newer entries like Untitled Goose Game.

The Late 2010s

      Welcome back, Nintendo!

Breath Of The Wild was exactly what Nintendo needed to retake its position near the head of the pack. A major shift in gameplay towards an open-world style gave the Zelda franchise and the Switch a serious shot in the arm.

A brand new design for Nintendo's latest console didn't hurt either, as the combination of permanent home base console and mobile device re-captured the imaginations of gamers. While the controller and movement-based games like 1-2 Switch don't seem to have caught on, Nintendo is still very clearly back into position as console innovator. 

Another open-world game that defined this same period, but on the PlayStation 4, was Horizon Zero Dawn. The combination of old and new styles with a gripping mystery of humanity's past pushed forward by a fiery main character gave many players a reason to stick with the PS4. 

Considering the lauded Red Dead Redemption came out in 2010 and Red Dead Redemption 2 was one of the most highly anticipated titles of 2018, it's clear that the open-world trend has reigned supreme this decade.

One game refutes that claim, though, is Fortnite.

You might love to hate it, but you have to ask yourself: has any other title done more to bring gaming into the public consciousness? When Star Wars and Avengers hold in-game events in Fortnite, I think it's clear we've surpassed fandom boundaries and hit the big time.

The concept of Battle Royale has been around for quite awhile, and one could argue it hit its stride with PUBG not long after getting popular through the DayZ mod to Arma 2. That being said, it wasn't until Fortnite that the term became a household name and a genre giant in its own right. 

The resurgence of Battle Royale aside, Fortnite still plays a major role in live streaming, catapulting it to a previously unknown level of popularity with celebrity appearances and major eSports events. Fortnite managed to hit just about every platform imaginable, including mobile phones, and that's another area of gaming worth looking at that made a huge splash in the '10s.

      Not only is this peak 2010s, I'd argue it was also the
reason the internet was invented

Forget Angry Birds and Candy Crush, because there was an absolute explosion of mobile gaming covering every conceivable genre this decade. Aside from the clear cultural significance, Pokemon Go's launch started the AR craze meant to get gamers off the couch and out into the world of sunlight and exercise.

Even if you didn't care for the change in mechanics from the other monster-collecting titles, Pokemon Go was the gift that just kept on giving, from Pokemoan dildos (yep, they exist) to a Chuck Tingle erotica book, to a news cycle that kept bringing up new insanity every, single day.

While some games got smaller and more mobile, others got larger and more tethered VR broke into the mainstream. The PSVR brought true virtual reality to console gamers for a (sort of) affordable price for the first time.

Meanwhile, a number of dueling PC VR platforms are now pushing the boundaries and getting the tech where it needs to go. Vive and Oculus are currently duking it out, with the Oculus Quest now ditching wires and even the PC entirely for a more liberated experience. We haven't seen the best VR has to offer yet  that's for sure  but what's available today is already impressive.

If virtual worlds are less important to you than the interactions that occur within them, the late 2010s were a time when communities really started coming together through platforms like Twitch and Discord.

While the former popped up in 2011 and the latter in 2015, it hasn't been until recent years that they've really come into their own. Whether a mobile gacha title or a graphics-intensive PC shooter, pretty much every game worth playing has its own Discord community where players help each other out and forge new relationships.

New consoles, new tech, new ways of communicating, and new and returning franchises made this is a decade to remember in gaming history.

Looking Forward to 2020 and Beyond

That all about brings us to the present: 2019 was filled to the brim with major gaming news. Bungie parted with Activision but kept the Destiny series; Blizzard stepped in it with their poor handling of eSports players discussing Chinese democracy protests; and Xbox Game Studios snapped up Double Fine back in August.

On the release front, the tail end of the decade hasn't slouched with top-notch new games in a number of surprising genres. Disco Elysium came out of nowhere, and yeah, it deserves the hype. If you miss Planescape: Torment style text-heavy experiences, you want to play this one. The movie snippet experimentation with Telling Lies is also well worth experiencing and shows gaming can be just as interesting and story-rich as cinema. That's not to mention Netflix's Bandersnatch.

As the year ends, we're seeing more changes to the gaming landscape with monthly game services like Game Pass, PS Now, EA Access, and more coming into prominence. Even the mobile gaming crowd is getting in on the monthly subscription action with Apple Arcade and Google Play Pass. If you want to try out a bunch of games for a low monthly price, there's never been a better time to explore what's available on console, PC, or mobile devices.

Of course, the obvious next step of this digital revolution was the advent of the all-streaming Stadia and XCloud. The effect of those changes is still anyone's guess, but it sure looks like we're barreling towards a digital future with a Netflix style library of games.

As Google and all-streaming services come into the spotlight, the console wars still raged between Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo. The PS4 managed to become the fourth best selling console of all time this gen, and some killer exclusives likely played a big role there. How the PS5 and Xbox Series X stack up against each other still remains to be seen.

Far more happened in this decade than we ever could have covered in one article, and I'm sure you'll be happy to tell me which games and events I missed that made this the best 10 years in gaming history.

For now, it's time to look toward the future, as next-gen consoles are well into development and are expected to arrive next holiday season. Major titles like Cyberpunk 2077, Baldur's Gate 3, and The Last Of Us 2 are mere months away, and we can't wait to see what the next 10 years have in store! 

What were your favorite video game moments from 2010-2019, and do you agree that it was the best decade in gaming history? Sound off in the comments below!

]]>
20+ Great Online Co-op Games Currently on Steam for Less Than $30 https://www.gameskinny.com/trd74/20-great-online-co-op-games-currently-on-steam-for-less-than-30 https://www.gameskinny.com/trd74/20-great-online-co-op-games-currently-on-steam-for-less-than-30 Sat, 30 Jun 2018 19:32:38 -0400 Ashley Shankle

If your group of friends is anything like mine, getting them all to both agree to and pay for a particular game is harder than herding feral cats. Maybe you're in a similar situation or maybe you're just on the prowl for some good multiplayer games to play in Steam Remote Play. Whatever the case, we've compiled a sizable list to help you out.

The good thing about Remote Play is that only one player in the group needs to own the game; the rest can try it out for free — at least in its current beta period. 

Let's choo choo on through, and hopefully, find you and your friend(s) a game you can play.

Terraria

Price: $9.99
Steam Store link

You'll see this game mentioned on just about every list of co-op games. This co-op sandbox-adventure has loads of content for any group of friends to go to town on. Terraria has stayed on the top played Steam games for 7 years for good reason.

Grim Dawn

Price: $24.99
Steam Store link

If you're looking to scratch your ARPG itch, you could do a lot worse than Grim Dawn. Even without the expansion, you can find dozens of hours of whackin' and lootin' in Grim Dawn. If you're not too keen on its darker aesthetic but do want an ARPG, the next option may be more down your alley.

Torchlight 2

Price: $19.99
Steam Store link

It may be older than Grim Dawn, but Torchlight 2 still has a lot of staying power if you've never given the game a chance. There is more content to be found in Grim Dawn but Torchlight 2 has a robust array of mods available, including content, quality of life, and classes. This is still a solid buy today in 2018, and it can be modded for up to 8-player multiplayer.

Castle Crashers

Price: $14.99
Steam Store link

Another staple co-op game sure to be on pretty much every co-op list, Castle Crashers is the poster boy for co-op beat'em ups. This is an easy one for all ages and kill levels to get into and have fun with.

BattleBlock Theater

Price: $14.99
Steam Store link

Another game from The Behemoth, the same studio behind Castle Crashers. BattleBlock Theater's campaign is completely co-op and it also features a healthy selection of hectic PvP modes, for when you want to prove your better than your friends once and for all.

Rocket League

Price: $19.99
Steam Store link

Before you say, "Ugh, no. Too mainstream," take a breath and consider Rocket League as a co-op game with a low barrier of entry and a whole lot of speed. Rocket League may not be your first choice, but it's an easy game to get a group of people to agree to hop onto for a quick round.

Risk of Rain

Price: $9.99
Steam Store link

Risk of Rain is a co-op game with an unquenchable bloodlust. Though not for everyone due to its extreme difficulty, Risk of Rain is an easy buy for roguelite fans or groups of friends who hate life. It's a hard game and it will knock you down a peg with ease, whether you've got 1 hour or 300 hours worth of gameplay logged.

Risk of Rain 2 is pretty good, too. It's currently $19.99 on Steam

Beat Hazard

Price: $9.99
Steam Store link

This one always seems to slip through the cracks since it's been blessing Steam with its presence for eight years now, but despite its age, Beat Hazard continues to be a recommended purchase for co-op play, providing you and your friend(s) are good at shmups. Beat Hazard lets you use your own music or one of many radio stations to generate enemies, which is what makes this one so unique.

Ultimate Chicken Horse

Price: $14.99
Steam Store link

Playing this game with a group of friends is an exercise in sadism. You and up to three other friends will be tasked with creating and completing the stages in Ultimate Chicken Horse, and you can bet at least one (or even all) of you will make them nearly impossible to beat, in the name of being the better platformer player. Ridiculously fun and honestly not as enraging as it sounds.

Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes

Price: $14.99
Steam Store link

An outlier among the other games in this collection, Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes only requires one person to buy the game. There's a reason for that: Only one player is allowed to see the screen at a time, so only one can directly defuse the bomb. The other players must tell the defuser what to do based on the instructions in the manual.

If it sounds a little convoluted, that's because it is by design. Can you and your friends defuse a bomb? Maybe, maybe not. But you can certainly yell at each other trying.

Don't Starve Together

Price: $14.99
Steam Store link

Don't Starve has stood as one of the more accessible survival games over the years, and the multiplayer expansion Don't Starve Together may be an even more enjoyable game than the base with the Reign of Giants expansion. Together contains both, plus the ability to die in the forest with your friends. If  as in my case — you tried the original game but didn't enjoy it much, you may still find this fun.

Left 4 Dead 2

Price: $9.99
Steam Store link

You may be dissuaded from picking Left 4 Dead 2 up based on its age. It's been out for 11 years now, it seems like everyone's been through the game. Why bother? If you haven't played it yet, this is your reminder to pick up L4D2 to play with your friends. It's still fun to this day, but it's best played with friends. Any community for a decade-old game is bound to be elitist and this game is no exception.

PAYDAY 2

Price: $9.99
Steam Store link

If you don't play PAYDAY 2, it's possible the only thing you've heard about it was the hubbub about microtransactions a few years back. It's been a long time since then though, and the game is a solid heister. You don't need to play the first game to dive right into this one and, provided your group can cooperate, there are hours upon hours of heists for you to tackle.

Dungeon of The Endless

Price: $11.99
Steam Store link

How about something a little different? Amplitude's Endless universe has expanded this way and that, with "that" being Dungeon of the Endless, a pseudo-tower defense roguelike. In this, players must hoard resources and expand based on the ever-increasing threats of the depth of the dungeon. A single round in this game can take several hours and it is very hard, but if your group's into roguelikes you could do a lot worse.

Borderlands 2

Price: $19.99
Steam Store link

Borderlands 2 is another old staple that still holds up today, especially multiplayer. Pushing through this game with friends is satisfying as firefights are intense and the weapon system is a ARPG-style lootfest. Not many games age as well as this one -- you can come back years later and still have a ton of fun.

Golf With Your Friends

Price: $7.99
Steam Store link

If you just want a game to pay a little attention to while chatting, this is an easy choice. Golf With Your Friends isn't exactly rolling in content variety and only contains 7 levels with 18 holes, but things are kept fresh through golf ball shapes and game modes. A very easy game to just sit back and play while having a couple beers and a laugh.

Human: Fall Flat

Price: $14.99
Steam Store link

How about something a little less-in-your-face about its silliness? We've got some pretty quirky games listed here, but they're all a bit more obvious about it than the cooperative physics-based puzzle solving found in Human: Fall Flat. The one downside here is that there are not a lot of stages, but it's a good deal at this price. 

Project Zomboid

Price: $14.99
Steam Store link

Don't let this game's graphics and the year it entered Steam Early Access fool you: Project Zomboid is a fleshed-out survival sandbox with hundreds of potential hours of gameplay, with continued support from its developer as it slowly shambles toward full release. If you and your group can accept the high learning curve, you can have a great time with this game.

Portal 2

Price: $9.99
Steam Store link

The Portal games are famous for a lot of reasons and one of those reasons is (Spoilers!) the stellar co-op campaign. If you haven't played Portal 2 and you want a game to play with a friend, you may as well throw the $2 at Valve and see what all the hubbub is about.

Barony

Price: $14.99
Steam Store link

An other roguelike to add to the pile, Barony is the closest to a traditional roguelike of any of the games listed here. It looks old, it feels old, and it plays like an old game. That's perfectly fine: You'll be hard-pressed to find another game that takes the classic roguelike formula, turns it 3D and realtime, and allows for online co-op. This one's pretty niche but you're in for a good time if you're comfortable with classic roguelikes.

Endless Legend

Price: $29.99
Steam Store link

Though Endless Space is currently also on sale, I would recommend Endless Legend over it for its similarities to the Civilization series and its overall fun factor. This is a more traditional-style 4X game. Expand, form alliances, wage wars -- it's up to you. A worthy strategy addition to most gaming groups on a budget.

Resident Evil 5

Price: $19.99
Steam Store link

You don't hear much about Resident Evil 5 or 6 for a few reasons, but none of those reasons equate to them not being fun with friends. Resident Evil 5 is often overlooked in favor of 6 for co-op play because it retains the semi-tank controls found in its predecessor, but if you and a friend can adjust to that control style this is an intense and worthwhile co-op action game.

Resident Evil 6

Price: $29.99
Steam Store link

Like its predecessor, Resident Evil 6 is best played with a friend. Unlike its predecessor, it's got more modern, fluid controls and a whole lot of QTEs. This one is over-the-top in about every regard, to the extent I can't help but find it silly each playthrough. If you like classic Resi games, go with 5. If you can't deal with the antiquated controls, go with 6. The decision is as simple as that.

7 Days to Die

Price: $24.99
Steam Store link

One of the first titles in the survival game wave that paved the way for games such as Rust and ARK: Survival Evolved, 7 Days to Die still stands as one of the most played games on Steam and is just as fun now as when it came out. As with the two mentioned, 7 Days to Die allows you a great deal of freedom in your efforts to survive. Break, use, and do whatever you want to ensure your survival in a world overrun by over 50 types of zombies.

Orcs Must Die! 2

Price: $14.99
Steam Store link

The original Orcs Must Die! set off a chain reaction of action-tower defense clones, some good and some bad, but none really hold up to the sequel. Orcs Must Die! 2 is an improvement over the first game in almost every way, and has the added bonus of online multiplayer. It's easy to get into, easy to wrap your head around, and easy to spend too many hours in.

Tabletop Simulator

Price: $19.99
Steam Store link

This is a bit of a strange one since Tabletop Simulator itself isn't a game, but a mini-platform for tabletop gaming. The amount of games available via Tabletop Simulator are nearly endless, making this a fantastic purchase for any static group of friends who have trouble deciding on what to play or want to play board games without having to pick up after themselves.

---

These are definitely not all of the co-op games you can get for relatively cheap on Steam, but these are some I can personally recommend. I hope you've found at least one game you find worthy of your Steam library.

]]>
Can't Wait for Darksiders 3? Play These 13 Games Instead! https://www.gameskinny.com/61byt/cant-wait-for-darksiders-3-play-these-13-games-instead https://www.gameskinny.com/61byt/cant-wait-for-darksiders-3-play-these-13-games-instead Tue, 16 May 2017 09:30:03 -0400 ThatGamersAsylum

[{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/b89b8987298f38fb5433b8ab706ec2c2.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/b89b8987298f38fb5433b8ab706ec2c2.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10903","description":"

The Surge

\n

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PC

\n

The Surge is another Souls-like. However, while Nioh focuses on faster action in a feudal Japan setting, The Surge maintains the slower pacing of the Souls games with an interesting sci-fi setting.

\n

One of the more interesting hooks in The Surge is that you can target the limbs of your enemies in combat, which allows you to potentially loot parts associated with said limb. This is similar to the Monster Hunter games.

\n

---

\n

So sure, I said I'd give you 13 games to play, but in reality, I gave probably close to triple that. We have sci-fi and fantasy. Greek mythology and Norse mythology. Gothic and punk undertones. Last gen and current gen (or current gen and next gen for those of you that haven't upgraded yet). 2D and 3D. There's honestly a little bit of something here for everyone.

\n

So there's no reason to not get a little Darksiders 3 action before the game officially drops -- whether it's actually a part of the series or not. 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/07df8651abf84b28e0c25fe576458756.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/07df8651abf84b28e0c25fe576458756.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10902","description":"

Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning

\n

Platforms: PS3 and Xbox 360

\n

This game is basically Darksiders 2 with slightly less responsive combat, no acrobatic climbing, but with a much larger, well written open world and a better skill system. Also, while Darksiders had Joe Mad as their artist KoA had Todd MacFarlane as their artist. 

\n

Sadly, there is not much hope that we hear anything else from this series ever again. Kingdoms of Amalur developer/co-publisher, 38 Studios, went bankrupt shortly after the game was released and all plans to move forward with the then in-development MMO were canned.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/c608464bc9c341ccb48736a5c2e1b62f.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/c608464bc9c341ccb48736a5c2e1b62f.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10869","description":"

Castlevania: Lords of Shadow Trilogy

\n

Platforms: PS3 and Xbox 360

\n

The Lords of Shadow trilogy, particularly the first one, was one of the more successful examples of a series reboot. It took the tone and made it grittier while preserving the gothic atmosphere. It also took traditional story hooks and flipped them on their head. Combine this with one of the more successful God of War style battle systems, which provided its own hooks via its unique magic system, and you have a recipe for success.

\n

Moreover, like Darksiders 3, LoS has your main character controlling a whip-wielding protagonist. Isn’t that reason enough to connect the two titles?

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/815cdc626369502d3609d3521a4bf71f.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/815cdc626369502d3609d3521a4bf71f.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10870","description":"

Nioh

\n

Platforms: PS4

\n

Nioh might be famous as a Dark Souls clone, which it definitely is, but it's more than just that. It's fast-paced combat, reminiscent of Team Ninja's other series Ninja Gaiden, makes it feel like a refreshing hybrid between the more action packed, juggle happy hack and slash games of yesteryear and the slower, more methodical hack and slash games of modernity. If nothing else, it is just a damned fine action game.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/7221fd62b83608ae1f68c47ff2f14d21.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/7221fd62b83608ae1f68c47ff2f14d21.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10867","description":"

Odin Sphere Leifthrasir  

\n

Platforms: PS4, PS3, PS Vita

\n

Odin Sphere Leithrasir is the remaster of Odin Sphere. But don't let this fool you; this old dog has learned some new tricks. While the story elements were left alone for this remaster, the gameplay systems received huge overhauls. The combat system, in particular, has been heavily reworked.

Unleashing combos, juggling foes, and activating spells/abilities never felt this rewarding before. Leifthrasir might be 2D, but it is every bit as intense and good as its 3D hack-n-slash counterparts scattered throughout this list.

\n

Leifthrasir also allows you to play the original version of the game if you so wish. Either way, both versions are aided by a much better, more consistent frame rate than the original game and updated HD visuals that ensure the gorgeous Vanillaware art style has aged just as gracefully in Odin Sphere as our brains choose to remember.

\n

If you are interested in OS:L, then you might also like some of Vanillaware’s other titles, such as Muramasa: The Demon Blade for the Wii and Vita, or Dragon’s Crown, available for the PS3 and Vita.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/fbcf51e2ae0ebdf991733f13306a9b8d.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/fbcf51e2ae0ebdf991733f13306a9b8d.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10901","description":"

Prince of Persia Series

\n

Platforms: PS3 & Xbox 360

\n

While Darksiders 2 aesthetically borrowed from the Prince of Persia series’ parkour, it never rivaled the unparalleled thrills, and challenges that could only be thrown at you if you were given time manipulating skills to navigate them. On top of that, each of the Prince of Persia games had solid, action based combat.

\n

Sadly, this series has been dormant in recent years. The Sands of Time trilogy had an HD collection on the PS3 and Xbox 360. 2008’s Prince of Persia reboot was a solid, albeit much less challenging approach to the series parkour action. And Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands, also on the PS3 and Xbox 360, was the last release in the series back in 2010. 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/ac520d141cf79c6dd18a801c1e213d5d.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/ac520d141cf79c6dd18a801c1e213d5d.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10866","description":"

Diablo 3

\n

Platforms: PS4, PS3, Xbox One, Xbox 360, PC, Mac

\n

Diablo seemingly served as one of the primary influences on Darksiders. Whether it be its new-found concentration on loot or its extended skill trees, the influences were evident, as they had been on so many RPGs before and since.

\n

Diablo’s combat might be much different than that of Darksiders, but at its best, it can still be just as hectic. Diablo 3’s fun skill system, varied classes, and nearly infinite loot allows for a ton of variation. Best of all, the game is still being supported. In fact, the necromancer class is set to release in the later half of 2017. 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/0535c48091a029754bc5f5067e2fb681.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/0535c48091a029754bc5f5067e2fb681.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10865","description":"

Portal Series

\n

Platforms: PS3, Xbox 360, PC, Mac, & Linux

\n

No, you did not misread that; I wrote Portal. Toward the end of the original Darksiders, you unlock a portal gun. Sadly, this portal gun can only be used on very specific pads, which greatly diminishes its ability to emulate the awesome physics bending powers shown off in the Portal games.

\n

Their attempts to rip off Portal were even more transparent than their attempts to rip off God of War and Legend of Zelda. While they succeeded in replicating the other two series, they were not able to bring any of the thrills of Portal by merely giving you a knock-off portal gun for one late-game dungeon. 

\n

That being said, the puzzles that used the portal gun in the original Darksiders weren’t bad, so that’s a caveat at least.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/5236b1166bbda44fdaf7c4e19cde26b2.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/5236b1166bbda44fdaf7c4e19cde26b2.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10864","description":"

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt GotY Edition

\n

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PC

\n

The Witcher 3 is a lot of what Darksiders 2 wanted to be. (The Witcher 3 is a lot of what many games want to be.) Well, that is only half true. Darksiders 2 never wanted the same grounded combat. It always wanted to be an over the top action game that featured Diablo-style loot.

\n

However, Darksiders 2's open world never came close to resembling the scope or the amount of quality content that is seen in The Witcher 3. The Witcher 3 also has more storytelling punch in its pinky (assuming it has pinkies) than Darksiders 2 has in all of its being.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/a83775b3cdead55e18542066921dfa09.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/a83775b3cdead55e18542066921dfa09.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10900","description":"

God of War III Remastered

\n

Platforms: PS4

\n

God of War served as the other half of the inspiration sphere for Darksiders, and as such, it's only appropriate that it gets a place on this list.

\n

The original Darksiders has some pretty epic moments. But God of War was built from the ground up to not only provide epic moments but to also let you live through them with against huge set pieces.

\n

Each of the GoW games starts out on a high note, whether it be fighting the multi-headed hydra in God of War or battling the gods as you ascend Mount Olympus in God of War 3. Alongside DMC, GoW helped define hack and slash combat for more than a generation of consoles to come. 

\n

If you're interested in playing the rest of the series, then you will have to go back to the PS3. There you will find two HD collections, one being for the PS2 games and the other being for the PSP games, as well as Ascension, which served as a prequel to the series.

\n

 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/12a807f97cc6771d4fdd3c9079b8f28b.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/12a807f97cc6771d4fdd3c9079b8f28b.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10863","description":"

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

\n

Platforms: Nintendo Switch

\n

The original Darksiders was basically a mashup of God of War and the Legend of Zelda, so why not return to one of these iconic series to experience what the game was able to successfully replicate?

\n

Lately, the Legend of Zelda series has seen its own renaissance, implementing RPG elements in a classic adventure atmosphere, as Breath of the Wild has been met with much praise from critics and gamers alike. by adopting the same open world structure that we grew to love through Bethesda’s RPGs. However, it was the more traditional Zelda formula, perhaps most well recognized from critics and gamers alike. 

\n

By adopting the same open world structure that we grew to love in Bethesda RPGs like The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind, LotZ has reinvented itself for a new era. However, it was the more traditional Zelda formula, perhaps most well recognized from Ocarina of Time, which the original Darksiders was able to successfully recreate.

\n

 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/375c7e6952a31bfe59e91006d8e003cf.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/375c7e6952a31bfe59e91006d8e003cf.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10862","description":"

Devil May Cry 4 Special Edition

\n

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PC

\n

When Devil May Cry 4 was originally released on the PS3 and Xbox 360 back in 2008, it was already a solid game. It featured the same tight combat from the previous games while introducing Nero and his Devil Bringer, an awesome demonic arm that allowed him to yank far-away enemies to him, or slam nearby enemies into the ground.

\n

The Special Edition adds three new characters. Trish, from the original DMC, can replay Dante’s missions, while Lady from DMC3 can replay Nero’s missions. Oh, and you can play as Dante’s badass twin brother, Virgil, through all the missions in the game.

\n

Same tight gameplay, new interesting characters to play with? Hell yes.

\n

If you are interested in this game, then you might also enjoy the Devil May Cry HD Collection, which contains the first three DMCs on one disc for PS3 and Xbox 360. The Bayonetta series, which featured some of the same developers from the original DMC games, plays almost identically to these games and is also worth your time. Bayonetta is available on PS3, Xbox 360, PC, and WiiU while the sequel is available exclusively on WiiU.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/349def580a23722ff04ace0ddbeae269.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/349def580a23722ff04ace0ddbeae269.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10861","description":"

DmC: Devil May Cry

\n

Platforms: PS3, Xbox 360, PS4, Xbox One

\n

When Ninja Theory’s reboot of the Devil May Cry series was announced -- aptly titled DmC: Devil May Cry -- fans were pissed. The game instantly garnered bad publicity for its heavily altered protagonist, and it was never able to shake this reputation. However, by the time the game had released, the Dante seen in the announcement trailer was only present in the flesh, as his mannerisms and attitude had been switched to better represent those of the Dante we know and love. Despite this, many people never paid attention. No white hair; no interest.

\n

\n

I'm not entirely sure that Dante ever actually touched a cigarette in DmC.

\n

But that’s a damned shame, because this game is one of the tightest hack-n-slash games on the market. Dante no longer uses a lock-on system to take enemies down, but does so in real time. Moreover, he has gotten some awesome new skills: Dante can now yank enemies closer, like Nero’s beloved Devil Bringer from DMC4, or pull himself to them.

\n

Holding down one of the trigger buttons switches to another weapon seamlessly mid-combo -- a system borrowed from Ninja Theory’s PS3 exclusive, Heavenly Sword. Combine this with a couple more unlockable weapons and several different guns, and you have an extremely wide array of combat maneuvers available to you at any given time.

\n

If you missed this game back when it first came out, then you should really consider buying it now. You also might be interested in Ninja Theory’s other games, such as Heavenly Sword for the PS3 and Enslaved: Odyssey to the West for the PS3 and Xbox 360.

"},{"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/d/a/r/darksiders-ps4-95bf8.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/d/a/r/darksiders-ps4-95bf8.jpg","type":"slide","id":"158565","description":"

Ever since THQ went out of business nearly five years ago, the future of several of their key franchises has been up in the year. While some of their games were promptly bought up and continued as if nothing had happened, such as the WWE franchise, we hadn't heard much from the Darksiders series in that time. 

\n

This was partially because the Darksiders property (amongst others such as the Red Faction and MX vs. ATV) was bought by a small, largely unknown company called Nordic Games. Initially, Nordic was reluctant to confirm what they would do with the franchises going forward, but earlier last week Darksiders 3 was finally confirmed to be in production. 

\n

If you are like some of us here at GameSkinny, you might be excited. And whenever you get that itch, you know you just have to play other similar games to help stave off said itch. So here are 13 games that all have a little something in common with Darksiders -- and games you can play right now. 

"}]]]>
5 Things We Learned During The Reddit AMA with Gabe Newell https://www.gameskinny.com/k38nv/5-things-we-learned-during-the-reddit-ama-with-gabe-newell https://www.gameskinny.com/k38nv/5-things-we-learned-during-the-reddit-ama-with-gabe-newell Thu, 19 Jan 2017 03:00:01 -0500 Will Dowell

Gabe Newell, co-founder of Valve and one of the largest figures in the gaming industry, has just finished a Q&A session called the Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything). In this Q&A, Gabe has shed further light on Valve development, future goals, and much more. Here are Five Things We Learned During The Reddit AMA with Gabe Newell.

Gabe Shows Aspiring Developer Important Techniques for Game Design

Passing knowledge to the next generation, Gabe Newell stresses the need of iteration cycles and constant changes. He states:

"The most important thing you can do is to get into an iteration cycle where you can measure the impact of your work, have a hypothesis about how making changes will affect those variables, and ship changes regularly. It doesn't even matter that much what the content is -- it's the iteration of hypothesis, changes, and measurement that will make you better at a faster rate than anything else we have seen."

This advice shares not only experience, but practical applications as well. Creating an actual method gives young designers guidance in the chaotic world of game design.

Valve Justifies Their Lack of Communication as Part of Their Design Structure

Valve has one of the most unique development structures, with developers self assigning to projects and creating freedom unheard of in the AAA space. Team sizes are fluid, increasing and decreasing in response to what needs to get done. This constant changing is one of the major reasons Valve is less open about its content than other developers. According to Gabe:

"Another way to think about this, and the way we talk about this internally, is that we prefer to communicate through our products. We are all pretty devoted to reading and listening to the community -- everyone here believes it is an integral part of their job to do so. And when it comes time to respond, we generally use Steam -- shipping updates that address issues or add functionality. Obviously this doesn't work for everything. Working this way imposes latency on our communication -- it takes longer to ship and update than to do a blog post. This can lead to the feeling of an echo chamber, where it seems like Valve isn't listening. We’re always listening. So sometimes the latency is rough for everyone, including us when we want to address issues quickly. On balance we think it's usually worth the trade-off."

The idea of showing the consumers updates and products rather than telling is a noble idea. As Gabe said however, the lack of response makes users feel ignored and can have larger backlashes if these updates don't go as planned. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive updates for example, frequently divide the fanbase with balancing changes and additional content that make fans feel Valve isn't listening to user feedback. Acknowledging Valve fans with programs like these do remedy the lack of communication somewhat.

Showing You the Games You Want Is Valve's Next Goal for Steam

In this Q&A, Gabe Newell constantly spoke about improving Steam's navigation and filtering systems so users can find the games they need. In response to games containing sexual content, Gabe Newell states:

"In principle, there are two problems to solve. The first is a completely uncurated distribution tool for developers. The second is a toolset for customers that allow them to find and filter content (and people are an instance of content most obviously in multiplayer) that is best for them."

This response is also similar to one involving quality control and the flood of games on the Steam storefront. Gabe Newell believes that there is "not a singular definition of quality" and instead Valve is focusing on making the storefront able to show the right games to customers.

New Valve Movie In the Works

Gabe also re-confirms that a movie in the Half Life/Portal universe made by Valve and JJ Abrams is still in the works, and that Steam's support is a primary focus. The movie was first announced in 2013 but no confirmation that it was still in development existed until now. JJ Abrams was the director of Star Wars: The Force Awakens and is considered a premier director/film writer. Hopefully it becomes the first truly great video game movie.

Valve is Working on VR and Source Engine 2 Titles

Currently, Valve has been working on unannounced titles using the Source 2 engine and plans on releasing the engine to other developers. They are also focusing on other VR games using their own VR controller. Not much is known about these endeavors, only that they're happening and to expect further announcements.

Counter-Strike: Global Offense has New Plans for 2017

Gabe Newell was not the only Valve employee answering questions in this event. Developer Ido Magal addressing the future of CS:GO in 2017 with this response: 

"As far as a roadmap is concerned, our priorities for 2017 are to replace the UI with Panorama, to make CS:GO available in more territories where a lot of Counter-Strike fans don't have easy access to it (like China), and anti-cheat. Of course, we're also planning on continuing to ship bug fixes and new features throughout the year, as in the past.

We plan to continue updating every week or two. As for Operations, there's no set schedule. We weigh that work relative to other work we could choose to focus on and other recent work seemed better for the product. For example, at the end of 2016 we chose to focus on shipping Inferno, improving spatial audio via HRTF, joinable public lobbies, and some long-term work that hasn't shipped yet."

CS:GO Operations are considered some of the best additions to the game and have been high on fan demand. Hopefully these updates satisfy their hunger for new content. He also addressed the use of the Source 2 engine with CS:GO, stating that the hitboxes would not be fixed with Source 2 and that they are unsure if the engine would be a good fit.

What did you learn in the AMA? Let us know in the comments below.

]]>
The 5 Best Board Games Based on Video Games https://www.gameskinny.com/00jci/the-5-best-board-games-based-on-video-games https://www.gameskinny.com/00jci/the-5-best-board-games-based-on-video-games Thu, 15 Dec 2016 10:00:01 -0500 SarahKel

[{"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/b/o/s/boss-header-4b850.png","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/b/o/s/boss-header-4b850.png","type":"slide","id":"145065","description":"

There as some fantastic board games out there that are inspired by video games – we are really excited about the future releases of Dark Souls and Bloodborne table top games. Games like Boss Monster clearly show the power of video games and how they influence our cultures. And sometimes video game developers see a game that they imagine working perfectly for a video game. Long may all this continue and as Wil Wheaton says -- play more games!

\n

Let us know in the comments below what your favourite video game influenced board games are.

"},{"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/2/0/1/2016-bloow-bowl-86aa3.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/2/0/1/2016-bloow-bowl-86aa3.jpg","type":"slide","id":"145064","description":"
Blood Bowl
\n

Originally a table top miniatures game, which inspired both a video game and a card game version. Bad news, the card game is discontinued, but the good news is that the miniatures game is back!

\n

The miniatures game, developed by Games Workshop was originally a parody of American Football, but with a fantasy themed twist. It is set in an alternate universe of the Warhammer Fantasy world, populated by characters such as humans, orcs, goblins and dwarfs.

\n

It is a 2 player, turn based game that utilises 28mm miniatures to represent the players on the field. Using a combination of cards, dice and counters, each player tries to score higher than the other by entering the opponent’s end zone with a ball carrying player.

\n

Each team have their own abilities, to balance the game. For example, elves are agile, but dwarfs are more physical. Within the teams, there are a number of player types, ranging from the most basic linesman, to the more specialists, such as blockers. Teams can gain elite star players after gaining experience points.

\n

It is quite normal practice to injure or maim the opposition, to make scoring easier by reducing the number of opposing players on the field.

\n

The game has recently been re-released and is priced at $99 from Games Workshop.  For all those who want to play the video game version, 2015’s Blood Bowl 2 is available on Steam for $44.93.

"},{"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/1/4/a/14a1-boss-monster-dungeon-building-card-game-parts-7ac23.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/1/4/a/14a1-boss-monster-dungeon-building-card-game-parts-7ac23.jpg","type":"slide","id":"145063","description":"
Boss Monster
\n

This is a dungeon crawling card game. While not specifically attributed to any one particular video game, its art work and themes clearly shows a love of classic video games.

\n

The game pits 2-4 players in a competition to build the ultimate side scrolling dungeon. Players assume the role of the dungeon master who lures unsuspecting heroes into their dungeon, with the objective of the most enticing, loot filled dungeon of all.

\n

The objective is to be the first to amass 10 souls from defeated heroes. Bosses can lose health if the hero entering the dungeon survives. Playing the game requires juggling the two main priorities: the need to lure heroes more quickly than your opponents and the need to kill heroes before they reach the boss.

\n

Players build one room each per turn, each with its own damage and treasure icons. More attractive rooms tend to deal less damage, so a greedy boss can soon become inundated with deadly heroes. If a player has more treasure icons of a certain type, for example money, than the other players, then the hero would automatically be sent to that dungeon. As such, different heroes seek different treasure icon types and as rooms are built simultaneously, this leads to a bidding war. Spells are instant-speed effects that can benefit the player playing the spell or can disrupt other opponents.

\n

The artwork on the cards is all 8 and 16 bit pixel style, so looks fun and retro, reminiscent of games such as Dungeon Keeper.  The box contains everything needed to play and there are now two expansions, where the box’s art work resembles a Game Boy box!  The game costs $17.99 from Amazon and is now available on Steam.

"},{"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/p/o/r/portal-bb35b.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/p/o/r/portal-bb35b.jpg","type":"slide","id":"145062","description":"
Portal: The Uncooperative Cake Acquisition Game
\n

So, Aperture Science has re-opened its doors, resuming its testing and a team of test subjects have entered the lab. They are ready for important, dignified and dangerous testing procedures, all in the pursuit of cake. Scientific progress is the objective of this game, despite of all the death and dismemberment around you. Read about what we love about Portal 2, right here at GameSkinny.

\n

It’s a funny and fast paced finish to the end, in the hope that you’re still alive.

\n

The game is full of constantly shifting game area control and card play, where players send their test subjects, via Portals into test labs. At the end of each player’s turn, one of the chambers at the end of the lab gives way and all test subjects on it fall into oblivion. Should the test subjects have numbered greater than all the others in the falling chamber, they earn some amazing parting gifts, which include cake.

\n

The tile based game system means there is a great deal of replayability, as they are selected at random and create a lovely 3D effect. 

\n

 The Portal gun allows players to place two pieces in two chambers, covering larger distances. The companion cube distracts other player’s characters, stopping the player from earning rewards.

\n

The player with the most cake when a team has lost its last test subject wins and can prove the cake was not a lie.

\n

The best thing is it’s a game developed by the makers of the infamous video games, so the knowledge, fun and game mechanics are absolutely true to the original source.

\n

The game is $41.96 from Amazon and includes a free Steam code for Portal 2.

"},{"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/c/o/xcom-ca946.png","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/c/o/xcom-ca946.png","type":"slide","id":"145061","description":"
XCOM: The Board Game
\n

Another Fantasy Flight Games product, where players are immersed into an elite and secret military organisation, known as XCOM.  Players are humanity’s last hope, tasked with repelling an escalating alien invasion. The video game sequel XCOM 2 was reviewed here on Game Skinny.

\n

The dice rolling mechanic and companion app immerse players deep into the tension and uncertainty of a desperate war against an unknown foe. The app makes the game work more smoothly and allows for a more dynamic turn structure and perfectly coordinates the alien invasion. The app also times players in real time, forcing players to think quickly and strategically. The app automatically selects one of five locations at the beginning of the game.

\n

Human civilisation is on the brink of collapse. It is a desperate and unequal situation, as life spirals out of control. Players must destroy UFO’s, research alien technologies and uncover the alien’s plan, with the objective of defeating the aliens.Yet simultaneously, players must prevent the collapse of the government that is funding this secret organisation. Time is very much a luxury, as the threat level increases.

\n

Play as one of four characters, including Commander and Squad Leader, each of which has different abilities that are all important to the world’s defence. Spend resources to roll dice and the number of successes affects what happens next -for example a good success could mean a completed mission.

\n

This game is available for $43.89 on Amazon.

"},{"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/d/o/o/doom-26190.png","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/d/o/o/doom-26190.png","type":"slide","id":"145059","description":"
Doom: The Board Game
\n

A board game, made by powerhouse Fantasy Flight Games, that brings the epic battle between elite marines and Hell’s most threatening monsters to the table top. Game Skinny has reviewed the game here!

\n

It is a strategy board game, immersing players in a battle between demons, controlled by one invader player, and a cooperative team of up to four marines. The marines must complete a number of objectives to fully fulfill the two operations, such as manning expeditions. Meanwhile, the invader commands their minions to destroy not just the marines, but the whole of humanity too.

\n

Each marine has a different ability, strengths and unique actions. Players are dealt various action cards which can be played during the course of the game to bolster their chances of defeating the monsters. The invader controller attacks using their card deck and has a great deal of power.

\n

Within the operations, there are 6 missions, each with a different map for the game to play out in. There are also threat, invasion and event decks that the invader player uses to hamper the players missions and are shuffled into the main player card deck.

\n

The game has a particular order for the marines - status and activation.  The status section relates is the organisational phase and the activation phase actions are reliant on what card is drawn from the deck.

\n

The game has just been released on 15 December, priced at $79.95 Amazon.

"},{"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/b/o/s/boss-header-6d67a.png","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/b/o/s/boss-header-6d67a.png","type":"slide","id":"145056","description":"

Board games, developed with official licences from video game studios are extremely popular and have exploded onto the market. No, we’re not talking about World of Warcraft themed Monopoly reskins, but actual fully fledged board games that officially set within the video games universe.

\n

There are a huge variety out there and even a couple of board games that inspired video game developers! The board game takes the essence and themes of the video game, but makes their own experience. And with many games now offering a companion app with rules, enemy movement and to create atmosphere, the entire experience is more immersive.

\n

Here are some of the best board games based on video games.

"}]]]>
Six Things That Would Make Me Give Up on the Video Game Industry https://www.gameskinny.com/7u1v6/six-things-that-would-make-me-give-up-on-the-video-game-industry https://www.gameskinny.com/7u1v6/six-things-that-would-make-me-give-up-on-the-video-game-industry Mon, 12 Dec 2016 10:17:26 -0500 Caio Sampaio

Throughout my life, I had the pleasure of being involved with different forms of entertainment. I studied playwriting in High School, worked as a film critic in my first year of college and now I am immersed in video games, a passion that started late in my life, at the age of 17, but only blossomed as the years went by.

When I first experienced interactive storytelling, I realized video games hold great potential to become the ultimate platform for narrative-driven experiences, in both depth and meaning, surpassing films and books. The prime example to support my reasoning is Ken Levine developing a story that can only be told through video games.

Moreover, games, through interactivity, can engage their users in a way that no other form of entertainment can. With this in mind, game designers have started to use their skills, in order to create experiences that motivate individuals to tackle real life problems.

Games can be a powerful tool for social change, as Jane McGonigal detailed in her New York Times bestselling book Reality is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change The World. The future for gaming seems bright in various fronts.

This industry continues to become more sophisticated each year, developing deeper and more engaging experiences and as the development curve for video games remains steep, the revolutions we are witnessing today are only the beginning.

While I love video games in their current form, the future of this medium is what excites me the most about it and also what makes me place games above all other forms of art.

However, as in any relationship, I may have to reevaluate my judgment over video games if certain expectations are not met in the long run. 

With this said, I compiled six future scenarios that, in conjunction, would make me give up on placing the video game industry on top of my priority list.  

Reason #1 - Lack of meaningful innovation:

As technology continues to grow in an exponential rate, new gadgets and novel ideas are created each day and the time spam between the development of one innovative product and another is getting shorter, due to a principle known as Moore’s Law.

This concept states that technology doubles its processing power every two years, as seen in the graphic below, designed by Singularity University.

Video game studios keep a close eye on the technological market, in order to spot opportunities to implement new technologies in their productions and gain an advantage on the competition. The current example of this process is the expansion of Virtual Reality.

I fear; however, for a future in which the time between the arrival of one revolutionary product and the other continues to get shorter, to the point that developers will not have enough time to fully explore one technology, before moving on to the next "big thing”.

If this scenario comes to fruition, it will hurt the innovation this industry can deliver, as developers will not be able to explore a technology to its limits.

Considering that I place the gaming universe on top of my priority list due to what the future holds. Lack of significant innovation is a scenario that could make me shift my focus towards other mediums.  

eita

Reason #2 - Lack of focus:

The Final Hours of Portal 2 (above) is an e-book written by the video game journalist Geoff Keighley, in which the author details the development process of Valve’s Portal 2.

Therein, Geoff reveals the story behind the origins of the game, and how the initial concept diverged from the final product we all go to know. The original premise of the game featured a counterintuitive concept.

In an attempt to innovate in their design, developers at Valve produced an early version of the game that did not feature portals and included a much different story. The codename of the project was F-Stop. 

The development team; however, realized it had moved too far away from the essence of the franchise. Acknowledging its mistake, Valve restarted the design of the game and Portal 2in the form we all know, was born.

With acclaim from both critics and fans, scoring 9.5/10 on Metacritic (PC version), Valve managed to transform its bad start into a masterpiece, but not every developer can accomplish this feat. A prime example is the Call of Duty franchise.

Through the years, players complained that the series had become too repetitive and when the minds behind it decided to alter their formula, the fans reacted negatively to the change.

I am referring to the latest entry of the series, Infinite Warfare

Enthusiast asked for change and when they received it, they complained. This may seem as a paradox, but the issue was not the change itself, but how it was delivered.

It was so drastic; that the essence of the franchise fell into oblivion and this resulted in a lesser product in the eyes of the players. Without following the identity of the series, it was not a surprise that the sales were 50% down from Call of Duty: Black Ops III.

In the years to come; however, this issue might not be exclusive to Call of Duty. The problem of lack of identity might spread in the video game franchises of the future. 

As developers have at their disposal an increasingly large set of technological tools to work with, the problem of Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare may affect the video game industry as a whole in the future.

In tandem with Reason #1, I fear for a future when developers attempt to harness the potential of several technological innovations at once and by “shooting at every direction”, the essence of long-standing franchises might be lost. Resulting; therefore, in a less engaging experience, which aspires to be many different things at once. However, it ends up pushing too hard towards innovation and failing to preserve what made it special in the first place.

Reason # 3 - Lack of focus (on writing):

Video games have delivered masterpieces in regards to writing, The Last of Us, BioShock and Mass Effect, to name a few, but these are the exceptions, unfortunately.

The overall standard for writing in this industry is considered low, if compared to other forms of entertainment, such as films and books.

The video above, from the YouTube channel Extra Credits, gets into further detail as to why the gaming industry often delivers poor narratives, but the biggest factor is the working conditions under which writers operate.

In many games, developing a narrative comes as one of the last steps in the development cycle, which means the writer needs to construct a story for a game that has essentially been already built.

With this said; video game writers usually need to face the frustration of having their imaginations limited by the constraints of the project, needing to adapt their ideas to a game that has been presented to them. This scenario limits the artistic freedom of writers and hurts the quality of their work.

The most notable example of writers delivering poor narratives as a consequence of the constraints of the project is the original Mirror's Edge game.

In 2011, the writer of the game, Rhianna Pratchett, spoke to the website ActionRip and commented on the reason why Mirror's Edge lacked a compelling narrative.

"DICE was a great company to work with, but Mirror’s Edge was a challenging project and an important learning experience for me. Unfortunately, because of the timing when I was brought in and a large amount of the script being cut (due to the late decision to remove level dialogue) the narrative wasn’t what I would’ve liked it to be. Thankfully, I got the chance to remedy this a little bit in the Mirror’s Edge comic series with DC. The story in those was much more along the lines of what I would’ve liked to have developed for the game."

This is the opposite of the working circumstances in other mediums, such as television and film, where the emphasis is in the narrative and all of the rest is built around that.

This trend in gaming is changing; however.

Some studios now have full-time writers as part of their design teams. These include BioWare, Ubisoft and Valve (above) and they aim to develop the narrative of their games since the initial concept, finding the best methods to combine storytelling with gameplay, in order to ensure both work together and deliver an optimal experience.

This shows a commitment from these companies to deliver compelling narratives and it represents the recognition that a good story is a fundamental piece to make a game be successful.

It is my hope to see more studios adhering to this modus operandi of placing more emphasis on writing and holding it as a crucial element of the experience.

Narrative design is a key component of the game’s design, after all, but whilst this industry has improved significantly from its roots, there still is plenty of room for improvement.

Developers are still discovering the language of video game narrative and this process of attempting new techniques, especially in the indie scenario, excites me, due to its potential to deliver more compelling and emotionally provoking experiences.

Considering the potential video games hold for storytelling, and given my passion for the art of telling stories, if the development curve in the evolution of video game narratives cease to be as steep as it is now, this will demotivate me to keep my excitement over the future of this industry.

Reason #4 - Lack of self regard:

Video games have come a long way since their conception, but they still have a long way to go. In order to improve the experiences of today and perfect the ones of tomorrow, we must learn from the past.

For this purpose, case studies have been created around games that are the best this industry has to offer to date, in order to understand what made them so special, but not everyone agrees that we should study games in depth.

Two years ago, I watched a video posted by the YouTube channel Extra Credits titled “Art is Not The Opposite of Fun” (above). As video games continue to become more complex, a worrying trend also emerges.

A portion of gamers believes that making a deep analysis of the products of this industry will make them worse. They claim video games are meant to be fun and studying them, in order to craft deeper experiences and develop their potential as a form of artistic expression, would hinder the fun they deliver.  

People perceive art as something boring or weird and some gamers fear that making games become more artistic will lessen their fun.

I must say, unfortunately, that I have witnessed this trend occur with my friends. In many occasions, when trying to talk about a game in a deeper sense, my peers would simply say, “it is just a game”, in an urge for me to stop “overthinking” about it.

If I speak about the potential games have to deliver experiences of art, people automatically assume I wish to make games become as boring and weird as people perceive art to be.

The image below portraits the reactions I get when I mention the development of games as a form of art.

“It is just a game”, this assumption needs to go.

We cannot demand better experiences if we, as a community, are not willing to mature along with this industry. The games designers create are a mirror that reflects us. They want us to buy their games; therefore, they create products to suit our needs.

With this said; if we are to ask for better content, we must grow together with the industry and attempt to discuss our games in a deeper level and that means embracing the possibility of having games as an artistic product.

Creating more artistic games; however, will not be easy. As Reason #2 stated, players can react negatively if games change in a way that makes them loose their essence, as happened with Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare.

With this said, the trick to making games mature as a form of art, without making them lose their fun, is ensuring that developers do not deviate entirely from what makes games special today.

Aiming for the future, whilst staying true to the past of games should be the goal of developers, so they may deliver productions with great artistic value, that are still fun to play.

But as the video from Extra Credits explains, there is a hidden reason as to why many gamers vilify those who study video games in depth.

They do not want games to change.

Many gamers love their favorite titles so much that they want them to remain as they are forever and as developers study new ways of delivering experiences through gaming, some gamers fear that the aspects they cherished dearly in their favorite titles will be a part of the past, buried seven feet under.

Whilst this is a comprehensible concern, we as an industry must acknowledge the potential video games hold for the future and unfortunately, techniques from yesterday may not entertain the audiences of tomorrow.

We must learn from the past, but never copy from it. We shall adapt what made games great today to the new reality of the future that is yet to come, but in a careful manner, so we do not lose the essence of gaming. We must evolve from where we stand, rather than creating something new.

This will be achieved through discussions on the topic, among professionals from AAA companies, indie studios and gamers, who should not think that games are “just games”.

AAA studios spend time and resources, in order to learn as much as possible about the art and science of game design. but if their target audience continues to diminish their efforts and they do not make a significant impact in revenue, studios may downscale these researches and progress in this industry may become stagnant.

Given that the biggest factor that compels me to video games is the prospect they possess, if this scenario occurs, I may have to reconsider what my favorite form of entertainment is.

Reason #5 - Lack of cultural plurality:

According to Newzoo, the top ten list for largest video game markets in the world looks as follows:

It is possible to see that the top ten rank is populated exclusively by countries from Asia, North America and Europe and it is no surprise that the major AAA studios in this industry are located in these continents, but other contenders are appearing quickly.

India, Brazil and Russia are examples of emerging markets in the video game industry and their indie scene is growing rapidly. Due to the expansion of the middle classes in these nations, more people have gained the financial resources to afford a computer and work on a game with their peers.

If you do not live in an emerging economy, you may ask - “Does this affect me?”

Yes, it does and a lot.

The emergence of these economies can bring plenty of benefits to the video game industry. The countries mentioned herein have cultures that differ vastly from the nations that dominate game development.

Individuals from these emerging markets have a different perspective over the world, due to a different culture, and this influences the products they create.

The different culture and set of beliefs from these developers in emerging countries makes them tackle different themes and explore new ideas, because they look at games through a different set of lenses.

Every gamer benefits from this, because this growth of the industry in emerging nations will allow players from all over the world to enjoy new experiences, themes, ideas and a more culturally rich industry.  

The best example of cultural plurality benefiting the video game industry as whole was the development of games in Japan and how they differed from the games designed in the United States.

The video game industry in American soil develops mostly FPS games, in which the gun is seen as a tool to empower the player against the foes. In Japanese productions, on the other hand, a gun is perceived as an extension of the character and used as a mean to escape from a situation where everything went wrong. In Japan, the gun is a last resort.

This occurs due to a difference in culture. In the United States, guns are seen through the lenses of soldiers, whereas in Japan, they are perceived under the philosophy of the samurai.

With this reasoning, Japanese developers created games such as Resident Evil, Silent Hill and Metal Gear Solid (above), each of these productions representing a revolution in the industry.

If Japan had not invested in video games, many contributions of this country to this industry would not have happened. Now, imagine if more countries start to emerge and establish video game studios.

In the future, we may see several revolutions in this industry, as developers from various part of the worlds, with different cultures, would look at games in a different manner, as happened with Japan.

The biggest concern for this future; however, is politics. In emerging nations, unfortunately, corruption rates are very high, as seen in the map below, presented by Transparency International.

In the emerging countries, a corruption scandal can suddenly become public and change the entire governmental structure. Despite living in the USA for a period of my life, I was born and raised in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, where I currently reside.

Our former president, Dilma Rousseff, lost the presidency after a political scandal, being accused of improper use of government money. After the current president, Michel Temer, took control, the direction of the country changed drastically.

As everything may change with the blink of an eye in developing countries, due to the corruption levels thereat, the promising landscape of the middle class and the video game industry in these locations may shift suddenly as well and not for the better.

With few unfortunate moves, a government may wither the development of the video game industry in its soil, by halting the social progress done in the last few years.

It may happen in Brazil, as Michel Temer promises to cut social programs, which were intended to allow the population to raise above the poverty line. This can happen in Russia, India and any other developing country, where instability rules.

The middle class in these nations progressed quickly, but it might go the other way around just as fast, depending on which way the wind blows in the government.

I dream of a future in which the plurality of cultures making video games increases significantly; however, the political scenario might shift in a manner that stops the progress of the gaming industry in developing countries.

If this occurs, we may never see the cultural diversity they would bring to this industry and this lost potential could demotivate, because the future I envision would not happen.

 

Reason #6 - Lack of social engagement:

If you are reading this article, it means you have an interest in the video game industry and there probably has been people in your life who have claimed that gaming is a fruitless activity; a waste of time.

Luckily, not everyone adopts this reasoning. Some individuals recognize the superb job video games have done to retain the attention of their users. Some people even go further and reckon that video games have potential to save the world.

In your job or at school, you have probably felt at some point that you could not clearly see the reason as to why you are performing certain tasks. You perhaps felt demotivated to go on.

If you felt this way, you are not alone. According to Forbes, most Americans are unhappy at work. The reason varies from not seeing the impact their jobs have, to a detachment from the mission of the company. 

Video games; however, are on the opposite side of the trend, as they continue to become increasingly more engaging, but playing a game consists of completing tasks, as in a real life job. With this said, what makes people become attracted with doing virtual work, whilst they become more dissatisfied with their real life jobs?

In a video game, players feel empowered. They relate with the objective of the experience and most importantly, they receive a clear an immediate feedback upon completing a task. They see how their actions influences the virtual universe around them. They have a clear sense of progression. This motivates players to continue.

In real life, there is no such thing. Reality is broken.

In her book Reality is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change The World, Jane McGonigal tells how we can craft a better world through gaming.

In her piece, she shares the techniques game designers use, in order to motivate players to become engaged in a video game. Her objective is to apply these techniques to real life situations, so they become more interesting and people become happier with their endeavors.

Using concepts from game design in non-game contexts is known as Gamification and it can be used to motivate people to engage in various activities, including those that can help others and save the world.

In 2007, McGonigal released an Alternate Reality Game, called World Without Oil. It was an experiment in which users needed to imagine themselves in a world suffering from a sudden oil shortage.

Players needed to work together, in order to create practical solutions to adapt to this new reality. The data gathered in this game has the intent of saving the world one day, as its Wikipedia article states:

By playing it out in a serious way, the game aimed to apply collective intelligence and imagination to the problem in advance, and create a record that has value for educators, policymakers, and the common people to help anticipate the future and prevent its worst outcomes. ”

We can see examples of video games causing positive impact even when they do not have the intention. The prime example is Pokemon Go stimulating sedentary individuals to go for a walk and sometimes even aiding to treat depression.

The potential video games have to retain the attention of users can be used to benefit society as whole, in various fields, including social change, happiness at work and even education, as the video below, from Extra Credits, explains:

The trend of using gaming for social good may help the video game industry to cleanse its reputation of “fruitless”, whilst actively changing the world. This premise should excite every gamer, but if it fails to continue, it might demotivate me to stick with this industry.

Conclusion:

It is my sincere wish to see the video game industry thrive, for I believe it holds enormous potential in the areas mentioned herein and many more, which I did not cite in this article for the sake of its length.

While I enjoy the games of today, what makes me place video games on top of my priority list is the bright prospect of this industry. If for some reason, the brilliant future of gaming does not occur, I will continue to play, but my perception of this field as the ultimate entertainment platform will most likely change. 

]]>
9 Clever Personalized Gaming License Plates https://www.gameskinny.com/chps8/9-clever-personalized-gaming-license-plates https://www.gameskinny.com/chps8/9-clever-personalized-gaming-license-plates Wed, 30 Nov 2016 13:05:40 -0500 Caio Sampaio

[{"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/i/c/license-7baa3.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/i/c/license-7baa3.jpg","type":"slide","id":"142322","description":"
PWNAGE
\n

Street racing is a dangerous and reckless activity, but with this license plate, no one will ever challenge the owner of this car for a race. They'd already know what the results would be!


\n
Conclusion:
\n

In some countries, the government chooses your license plate and you must obey, as modifying it may incur in legal charges.

\n

In other nations, however, drivers can customize their plates. If you are lucky to live in one of these places, make sure to grab the opportunity to use your license plate to show some humor and display your gamer pride.

\n

We hope the plates from this article served as inspiration!

"},{"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/i/c/license-23857.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/i/c/license-23857.jpg","type":"slide","id":"142320","description":"
SPAAACE
\n

This car is not a space shuttle, but if its owner has the same excitement of the space core from Portal 2, even the most mundane of vehicles can feel like a spaceship. (I wonder if the inside is modeled after a space station?)

\n

If you played Portal 2, you most likely read “SPAAACE” in the voice of the space core in your head. At least this guy could provide some comedic relief on your salty drive home from work. 

"},{"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/i/c/license-86d6c.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/i/c/license-86d6c.jpg","type":"slide","id":"142319","description":"
HADUK3N
\n

After a stressful day at work, it is pretty easy to get angry if someone blocks you on the road as you drive back home. But if you see someone with this license plate, you may want to think twice before honking.

\n

Harkening back to the good old days of Street Fighter II and Street Fighter II Turbo, this throwback license plate is something any retro gamer would love to have slapped onto the back of his ride. 

"},{"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/i/c/license-8206a.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/i/c/license-8206a.jpg","type":"slide","id":"142317","description":"
Eat, Sleep, Game
\n

 

\n

In real life, we have to fulfill our adulting duties, ranging from college to work. And with so many responsibilities, gaming sometimes gets pushed to the sidelines of our priority lists.

\n

This license plate shows the routine every gamer would love to have. Too bad life often doesn't comply with this simple (sub) routine. I mean, wouldn't that just be the life? 

\n

Anyway, you can buy this cool license plate on Cafe Press for a measly $16.99. However, as the website states, "This product is not appropriate for use in all states or on vehicles outside the USA." 

"},{"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/i/c/license-5939a.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/i/c/license-5939a.jpg","type":"slide","id":"142316","description":"
Legend... of Zelda
\n

We all have our favorite sagas. And as we continue to make our way down memory alley, who can't help but remember the awesomeness that was/is the Legend of Zelda? This car owner shows pride and creativity (I mean, that's just perfect placement, right?) to let people know which franchise he cherishes the most.

\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/l/i/c/license-1e701.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/i/c/license-1e701.jpg","type":"slide","id":"142321","description":"
SEGA
\n

While some argue between Microsoft and Sony, some just want to remember the good old days, when Nintendo and Sega were duking it out for our hearts, minds, and money. 

\n

Perhaps this guy aims to run as fast as Sonic. We can only hope he doesn't run over any spikes on his way to work.

"},{"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/i/c/license-6730c.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/i/c/license-6730c.jpg","type":"slide","id":"142315","description":"
Xbox 360
\n

PlayStation or Xbox?

\n

For many people, the side they go with in the console wars is a matter of pride.

\n

This guy has decided to make sure everybody knows where he stands in regards to his favorite system. Don't get stuck in a traffic jam with this guy, especially if you're a Sony fan. 

"},{"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/i/c/license-4f840.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/i/c/license-4f840.jpg","type":"slide","id":"142314","description":"
GG Rekt
\n

It does not matter if you have just passed your final exam in college or have just landed a new job: you probably heard someone saying you could not do it. But guess what? With a little ingenuity and elbow grease you did! (Hah! Take that...)

\n

Anyway, the owner of this car decided to roll through life and make sure to prove the naysayers wrong. Why? Because he “rekts” those who stand in his way.

Don't you just wish you had this license plate when stuck in the 5 o' clock log jam? 

"},{"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/i/c/license-c4027.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/i/c/license-c4027.jpg","type":"slide","id":"142312","description":"

Most teenagers dream of the moment when they purchase their first car, but if you live in a big metropolis, driving is not always enjoyable. Traffic jams, difficulty finding a good parking spot and reckless driving are the worst nightmares of any driver -- and they're much worse in the city!

\n

While driving can be laborious, that does not mean you cannot have fun with your ride. Some people have found creative ways to customize their cars in order to display a bit of their personalities, and one the best methods to achieve this is through a custom license plate.

\n

With this in mind, we've compiled a list of creative license plates for gamers to display their pride.

"}]]]>
Game Developers Could Learn a Thing or Two From Portal 2's Narrative Design https://www.gameskinny.com/7itfq/game-developers-could-learn-a-thing-or-two-from-portal-2s-narrative-design https://www.gameskinny.com/7itfq/game-developers-could-learn-a-thing-or-two-from-portal-2s-narrative-design Tue, 25 Oct 2016 10:11:26 -0400 Caio Sampaio

We all have memories that will forever dwell in our minds. A first kiss, a first job...or the first time a rogue Artificial Intelligence attempts to murder you using a neurotoxin, for any Portal fans. 

Released in 2007 by Valve, Portal became an instant internet hit, featuring innovative gameplay mechanics and a charismatic universe -- to the point of immortalizing the sentence “the cake is a lie”.  In 2011, the series received its second installment, with more gameplay elements and a longer story, showing the origins of Aperture Science.

The narrative of Portal 2 was as innovative as the gameplay. The game featured only five characters, two of which were dead, a couple of whom were robots and one, the protagonist, who was mute. This combination seems unlikely to deliver a compelling plot, but writers at Valve managed to develop a successful story that the gaming community regards as one of the best in the medium.

And there are plenty of lessons that developers today could learn from this production and some of the storytelling techniques used in Portal 2. Lessons like...

1. Let players use their imaginations.

Many characteristics set us apart from other animals -- and one of them is our innate ability to imagine objects, images, and situations that do not exist. While reading a book, we test our imagination to its limit, as we turn the words printed in the pages into scenes in our minds.

This is one of the reasons why reading a good novel is a compelling experience. It allows the readers to create a whole universe within their heads and enables them to add their own special touch to it. The story written will be the same for every reader, but the way you picture the characters, settings, and how the events unfold will depend on your memories, knowledge and personality. What you create in your mind is yours and yours alone.

People tend to hold dear what is exclusive to them; therefore, a story that allows the audience to use its imagination tends to be more engaging.  

In Portal 2, writers at Valve applied this concept from literature by making players travel through the old sections of Aperture Science, whilst listening to audio tapes recorded decades before. The areas players encountered as they explored the ruins of the old testing areas worked in tandem with the audio tapes, in order to provide just enough information to keep the audience moving in the right direction with the plot.

The details of how the events unfolded, however, were left out -- so it was up to the player’s imagination to visualize what happened in that locale decades before. No matter what players imagined, each member of the audience pictured it in a different way, thus creating a more personal and meaningful experience to each player.

2. The value of a secondary plot (and more imagination)...

Developers at Valve used the aforementioned concept from literature in order to implement a secondary story in the game’s narrative. In this case, the struggle of Doug Rattmann to survive in the confines of the Enrichment Center, without succumbing to insanity. Players found traces of him, his drawings, and his dens -- where he left cryptic messages behind.

Developers introduced the element of imagination when players encountered Rattmann’s traces and theorized over the meaning behind them. And as stated above, the theories each player conceived of through their own imaginations were unique to them, thus becoming more meaningful.

The proof this concept worked is the thousands of pages on the internet with fans passionately theorizing on the meaning behind the drawings and dens left by Doug.

But a secondary plot must not rely solely on the player’s imagination in order to be successful. It must also be related to the primary story of the game -- otherwise players may not have interest in it. Developers at Valve made sure the player knew that the mysterious drawings painted on the walls mattered, by showing a painting of Chell early in the game, in a location the player could not ignore (picture above). That was the developer’s way of saying “this is important, look at this”.

3. Less can be more.

Portal 2 has a charismatic cast of characters, but players rarely hear them talking. And even when they drop a line, it is usually short -- unlike other games with minutes of dialogues in cutscenes. Throughout most of the story, players face a silent experience. The writers did this for two reasons, and the first one is to reinforce the mood of the game: solitude.

As players travel through a facility with miles of area without encountering another human being, loneliness is the natural sentiment, and the deafening silence within the walls of the complex enlarge this feel. Having characters speak too often would defeat the purpose of building the atmosphere and the mood of the game.

The second reason why lines of dialogue are scarce in Portal 2 is to add value to the characters. Remember, anything that is found in abundance loses its value and the same principle happens there. As they do not talk often, each time they do is an event in and of itself, considering how charismatic they are. Giving them too many lines of dialogue would make each line less special.

Even if a production has interesting characters, it is wise to avoid using them too often. Everything needs an opposite, and opposites attract. An intelligent line placed after a long period of silence will contrast with the silent moments and shine brighter, which is exactly what happened in Portal 2.

An unfortunate example of writers ruining a character by using it too often is Ghost from Destiny. He speaks so frequently and for so long that his presence becomes irrelevant over time. Many aspects were wrong in this character from Bungie’s latest title, and this was one of them.

Writers must use their characters wisely and keep them precious.

 4. Keeping the player in control.

Valve’s modus operandi, when it comes to narrative design, is to avoid cutscenes at all costs. This is a wise decision, considering that the selling point of video games is interactivity and productions in this industry should try to deliver information in a way that keeps the player in control. The aim is to design an experience that is unique to this medium, thus setting it apart from existing forms or art by creating its own language. Taking control away from players and forcing them to watch a cutscene would defeat this purpose.

You may argue that games ranging from Metal Gear Solid to Uncharted depend on cutscene-driven narratives, and were successful. And you might be right, but it is important to know that using cutscenes is not the optimal choice for every game.

The two productions cited above are third person shooters, where the camera is far from the faces of the characters -- making it hard for players to see their facial expressions and leading to a diminished emotional appeal in the story. In this scenario, the writer can implement a cutscene in order to get the audience closer to the faces of the characters for dramatic purposes.

In a first person game, on the other hand, cutscenes rarely are necessary, considering that the point of view of players allows them to see the details and the facial expressions of those around them.

In the Portal franchise, the player remains in control at all times. This helps maintain a continuous interactive experience without breaking the mood and the pacing of the game -- the way video games in first person should be.

5. Breaking narrative patterns.

A predictable story is a boring one. In order to keep the audience engaged, the writer needs to develop a narrative in which a surprise strikes without notice. There are plenty of methods to achieve this, and in Portal 2 the writers added the element of surprise by breaking patterns.

Wheatley once was a funny little robot who only wanted to help, until he went rogue. The AI Chell knew no longer existed, after taking GLaDOS’ place. Consumed by power, Chell’s only friend became her greatest enemy. GLaDOS went on the opposite route, by being Chell’s biggest enemy and later on siding with her in order to defeat Wheatley. These two surprises were only possible because people tend to detect and follow patterns -- and the writers used this fact to their advantage.

They developed these characters with a clear personality. They built a behavioral pattern around them. And once players thought they knew these characters so well they could anticipate their actions; the writers broke the pattern, thus creating the element of surprise and more engagement on the part of the player. 

This technique is not valid for character development only, as the team used it in other areas as well. The core activity of Portal 2 consists of shooting portals into walls in order to move through an area -- and then repeating this process for approximately 10 hours. This premise may not seem fun, yet it delivered an unforgettable experience. One of the techniques used to retain the interest of players was breaking patterns regarding the areas explored in the game.

In the first installment of the franchise, the only major shift in setting occurred when Chell escaped from the final testing chamber and entered the offices of the Enrichment Center. Considering how short the first game was, this single change sufficed. But in Portal 2, the story was longer, making it necessary to add more variation to the maps.

The player started in a destroyed version of the Enrichment Center, which was then rebuilt by GLaDOS. Chell proceeded to be betrayed by Wheatley, who sent her to the old offices of Aperture Science. The changes in setting continued as the player progressed. Had the story occurred in a single section of the facility, players would have lost their interest very quickly.

If the players can anticipate what comes next, they will soon get bored.

6. Don't forget the fun.

As players move further into the game, they are introduced to new gameplay mechanics that increase the challenge of the puzzles. Some argue that Portal 2 is a long tutorial, given that players continuously learn how to play the game each time a new feature is added.

All of the techniques described in the topics above culminate in this one. The most important element of a game is learning how to play it. And the Portal franchise does not use texts, cutscenes. or training areas to tell players what to do. The mechanics must be discovered intuitively by the audience, which may lead to a process of trial and error -- hence the necessity of all of the techniques mentioned above.

A mistake novice game designers often make is dedicating all of their effort to crafting the gameplay mechanics. Obviously they are important, but so are all the other areas of the game, which must be used to deliver the best experience.

If players are engaged in the experience, they will be motivated to learn how to play, even it the learning curve requires a process of trial and error. They will continue to fail, fail often, bust most importantly, they will fail forward, until they learn how to master the gameplay mechanics.

Remember, people learn better when they are having fun. This is an aspect that the developers of Valve achieved through the concepts established in the topics above and via other techniques that were not mentioned in this article.

Conclusion

Portal 2 is a masterpiece of the gaming industry, and the points above barely scratch the tip of the iceberg in regards to the construction of its narrative. But I hope these insights could get you a better understanding on the techniques used to design this game.

What the future holds for the Portal franchise remains to be seen, but it will be a long time before its narrative design starts to feel outdated.

]]>
Five Games That Will Increase Your IQ https://www.gameskinny.com/dt0or/five-games-that-will-increase-your-iq https://www.gameskinny.com/dt0or/five-games-that-will-increase-your-iq Fri, 14 Oct 2016 06:00:01 -0400 Sergey_3847

[{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/08885e439b4d1d0ec74f6eddebc6a189.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/08885e439b4d1d0ec74f6eddebc6a189.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"9681","description":"
Braid
\n

If you want to experience something truly unique, then go ahead and play some Braid. It is full of puzzles that at first may seem too difficult, but as soon as you get into the unusual style of the game, it will be the most rewarding experience.

\n

Playing with time and space requires learning, as you will return to the same puzzle time and time again until you understand how to go through every single level correctly. Doing this will significantly improve your memory and analytical skills.

\n

These five games are just the tip of an iceberg, as there are many others. Let us know, what other games that increase our level of intelligence would you like to see mentioned? Share them in the comments below.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/2151bbf8c701477e50a8dc9506cdae93.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/2151bbf8c701477e50a8dc9506cdae93.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"9680","description":"
Portal 2
\n

Except for Half-Life, this is Valve’s best game to date. It incorporates some of the most inventive puzzles ever designed for a video game. More than that, it has an excellent story and characters that won’t ever let you feel bored.

\n

The puzzles get exponentially harder, so that you have time to adapt, learn and progress accordingly. If you can’t solve some part of it, then you can cooperate with a friend for a mutual walkthrough, or just play in co-op – that is just how great Portal 2 is.

\n

Take a journey into the heart of the Aperture Science complex without any expectations and get your mind blown. This game will stimulate all your brain centers and let you have fun, while activating your intellect.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/5e17e5b65d54c1c5c0ca8965f471ad68.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/5e17e5b65d54c1c5c0ca8965f471ad68.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"9679","description":"
80 Days
\n

The Time Magazine’s game of the year (2014), 80 Days is based on the Jules Verne's novel “Around the World in Eighty Days.” This game is not a walk in the park, as you will have to deal with many tasks in a limited timeframe.

\n

Every choice will lead to different outcomes, which can either turn out well or not too well for you. Every city will have something new waiting for you to discover and solve, thus making your brain spin like never before.

\n

On top of that, this game will give you many lessons on geography and cultural preferences from different parts of the world. Although it is not as big as the previous two games in this list, 80 Days is one of the most intelligent games you will ever try out.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/04d1b562427cdb753c46817dafac30b7.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/04d1b562427cdb753c46817dafac30b7.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"9678","description":"
Sid Meier’s Civilization (series)
\n

This is another excellent series of games that can sparkle your interest in history. It covers an even wider period of time than Assassin’s Creed, as it takes you from the ancient times and into the very future.

\n

The best thing about Civilization is the political strategy element that requires you to think really hard on how to get your country out of the most difficult situations. This requires a lot of attention to details, including math skills and tactical planning.

\n

Additionally, every Civilization game has its own Civilopedia – a vast database of knowledge that can give you many useful tips on how to rule the nation of your choice.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/634b83732f4545b1dfc9a8db296096d6.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/634b83732f4545b1dfc9a8db296096d6.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"9677","description":"
Assassin’s Creed (series)
\n

You might think that Assassin’s Creed is your typical action-adventure with no real value when it comes to learning something. Well, maybe the last couple of games in the series aren’t as good, but the first three or four games had much more to offer.

\n

The developers at Ubisoft had put a lot of effort into accurately showcasing the historical events with the corresponding dates and times, not to mention perfectly designed set pieces. Assassin’s Creed series takes you through the crusades and Italian Renaissance, from The American Revolutionary War to French Revolution and the industrial boom of England.

\n

Every game in the series has an entire history class written under each character, although some of the facts need to be re-checked for consistency. If you were never interested in history, after playing Assassin’s Creed series you will find yourself wanting to know more. And, if that makes you learn and develop, then it’s a worthy game to play.

"},{"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/a/m/gamer-brain-331e640-cd95d.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/a/m/gamer-brain-331e640-cd95d.jpg","type":"slide","id":"136244","description":"

Video games are often criticized for making gamers lazy and ignorant, but usually it’s the people that have no idea what games actually entail. Every game is a puzzle that needs to be solved and requires brain power, so none of that criticism really holds any firm ground.

\n

Of course, there are games that are designed to help you relax, but various scientific research has proven that certain types of games actually help you process information quicker and more efficiently. So, here are five of the best games that will help you increase your IQ.

"}]]]>
Is This Just Fantasy? 10 Hilarious Game Songs You Won't Believe Are Real https://www.gameskinny.com/xysxd/is-this-just-fantasy-10-hilarious-game-songs-you-wont-believe-are-real https://www.gameskinny.com/xysxd/is-this-just-fantasy-10-hilarious-game-songs-you-wont-believe-are-real Thu, 08 Sep 2016 10:00:01 -0400 Richard Sherry

[{"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/s/c/r/screen-conkersbadfurday-9ede8.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/s/c/r/screen-conkersbadfurday-9ede8.jpg","type":"slide","id":"132864","description":"

I hope you've enjoyed this journey through the strange but entrancing world of video game music, and had a laugh or ten at these weird and wonderful songs.

\n

Some may have made you question the sanity of their creators, but all are entertaining and contribute to the colorful tapestry that is gaming!

\n

What are some of your favorite hilarious video game songs? Leave a line or two down in the comments!

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/9431fc1d628423dfd92b34534e1215ce.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/9431fc1d628423dfd92b34534e1215ce.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"9540","description":"

Rick's Adventure Music (Portal 2)

\n

The Portal series had to feature on this list, right?!

\n

This unmatched masterpiece is short and sweet, and manages to parody a huge swathe of music in such a small time that it never fails to make me chuckle.

\n

Rick the Adventure Sphere is a fantastic character, and his adventure song is as memorable as anything from Portal 2. It's even funnier when you realize that Rick is voiced by the famous Nolan North, whose other work includes Uncharted's adventurer Nathan Drake.

\n

Best Line: "Dun di di DUN" (only kidding): "HANGING BY OUR FINGERS FROM A MOUNTAIN!"

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/48672cdaa94dfa52ab78df1b4a38cb04.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/48672cdaa94dfa52ab78df1b4a38cb04.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"9548","description":"

Philistine (No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle)

\n

Another over-the-top game with a deservingly entertaining soundtrack!

\n

"Philistine" is the theme song for a boss battle with Margaret Moonlight, who sings it as the last thing her enemies ever hear. It's also full of her slinging insults at hero Travis -- calling him a "geek", a "bore" and of course a "goddamn philistine!"

\n

Best Line: "Thigh high socks are my absolute territory, Go on and drool, the Otaku cannot resist."

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/95d584e52ede24f879303c43fb3251a3.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/95d584e52ede24f879303c43fb3251a3.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"9547","description":"

Scientist Salarian (Mass Effect 2)

\n

This is not only one of the funniest moments in the Mass Effect series, but unlike most attempts at game humor, it also manages to be heartwarming and characterful.

\n

It shows us another side to everyone's favorite Salarian, as Mordin sings Gilbert and Sullivan with a big smile on his face. This scene really brought Mordin into our hearts, but was also so unexpected and entertaining that it deserves its place on this list.

\n

Best Line: "I'm quite good at genetics as a subset of biology, Because I am an expert which I know is a tautology."

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/e9d816a216762c9be942943e3ef440a8.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/e9d816a216762c9be942943e3ef440a8.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"9541","description":"

Oh No You Didn't (Mercenaries 2)

\n

In a world of mercenaries where money is the only thing that matters, there can be few things worse than failing to pay what you owe. 

\n

This song is a side-splitter for so many reasons, but most of all is the contrast of violent lyrics with upbeat and simple musical style topped with silly falsetto and vocal harmonies.

\n

Best Line: "First you try to trap me, then you bust a cap in my ass (Oh no you didn't!)."

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/18a01f1ebe7f54989691b0e1d706ebb8.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/18a01f1ebe7f54989691b0e1d706ebb8.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"9545","description":"

End Credits (God Hand)

\n

This song is wondrous. Its huge charisma is matched only by its ginormous ridiculousness. It talks about using the crazy power of the God Hand to dish out "ball buster" punches (ouch) and to work out your stress (come again?!). The video features the game's characters busting out some funky dance moves, interwoven with wonderfully insane scenes from the game.

\n

Best Line: "Dragonkick your ass into the Milky Way (Milky Waaay)."

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/08c851be81b53515f6a019ed53c58f27.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/08c851be81b53515f6a019ed53c58f27.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"9544","description":"

There's A Zombie On Your Lawn (Plants vs. Zombies)

\n

The end credits song for Plants vs. Zombies is annoyingly catchy and amusing. A singing sunflower reflects on the cholesterol value of brains and gathering an army of flora to take on the undead.

\n

It's silly, it's funny and oh, there's a zombie on your lawn!

\n

Best Line: "Road cones protect my head."

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/c0450e14f072297c0b27a03c3c32f22e.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/c0450e14f072297c0b27a03c3c32f22e.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"9546","description":"

DK Rap (Donkey Kong 64)

\n

This one is more funny for its cringe value than anything. Hearing the DK Rap song is a real pinch-yourself moment. Is this all a dream? A spoof? Nope, it's Donkey Kong 64.

\n

The DK Rap is what would happen if Run DMC lost all their talent and decided to write video game music. It's one of the worst game songs, but hell if it isn't hilarious for it.

\n

Best Line: "Come on Cranky, Take it to the fridge..."

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/c2054ded2ec972e3c6935cbb55627dce.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/c2054ded2ec972e3c6935cbb55627dce.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"9549","description":"

All Master's Rap (Parappa The Rapper)

\n

Parappa The Rapper is a game that's full of bonkers scenarios and strange raps. The Bathroom Rap has to take the cake as the weirdest though.

\n

Featuring a whole host of the game's characters all desperate for the toilet, our titular rapper must take each one on in a rap battle with the highest stakes imaginable -- getting one step closer to the bathroom.

\n

What could better sum up the artistry of rap music than that...?

\n

Best Line: "In the rain or in the snow, I got the funky flow, but now I really gotta go."

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/aab7488d90d55a4c7a3f2556fb5204e3.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/aab7488d90d55a4c7a3f2556fb5204e3.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"9543","description":"

The Great Mighty Poo (Conker's Bad Fur Day)

\n

Conker's Bad Fur Day is the king of low-brow humor. The potty-mouthed squirrel meets his match, however, when he encounters this defecation debacle.

\n

A giant, sentient poo makes for a memorable boss battle as he spouts an incredulously hilarious operatic performance whilst Conker must dodge the disgusting projectiles aimed his way, launching toilet paper at the poo before flushing him down the drain.

\n

It's rude toilet humor at its most potent, and for better or worse is certainly a one-of-a-kind gaming experience.

\n

Best Line: "Sweetcorn is the only thing that makes it through my rear, How do you think I keep this lovely grin?"

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/f776273da37e5af568c556cb26aa79c6.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/f776273da37e5af568c556cb26aa79c6.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"9542","description":"

The Tale of the Nuckelavee (The Bard's Tale)

\n

I'm so thankful for this game's existence.

\n

The PS2-era classic The Bard's Tale is one of the funniest games to ever grace the world. Focusing on a disapproving narrator and a sarcastic Bard who is more interested in alcohol and sex than heroism, the game parodies fantasy RPGs and is full of laugh-out-loud moments.

\n

The Bard's Tale is littered with comical songs; including a celebration of beer and the unforgettable "It's Bad Luck To Be You". And who can forget "Here's To The Bard", sung by a hall of Viking warriors hurling insults at The Bard for his blunders.

\n

"The Tale of the Nuckelavee" is one of the funniest gaming songs of all though. Not only are its lyrics hilarious and pointed, but its circumstance makes it all the more hilarious. The group sings a raging song about the evil Nuckelavee and make some less-than-polite comments about the unknown man who set the beast free.

\n

And who might that "dimwit", "asshole", "ox-head" be? Well none other than The Bard himself of course!

\n

Best Line: "And if they ever should find the fool, We'll hang him upside down by his tool..."

"},{"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/s/c/r/screen-conkersbadfurday-2d473.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/s/c/r/screen-conkersbadfurday-2d473.jpg","type":"slide","id":"132863","description":"

They say good things come in threes, so I'm rounding off my trio of video game music lists (Stop and Hear the Music and Waxing Lyrical) with some fun.

\n

We've seen how game music can be moving, epic and interesting; now I give you 10 video game songs that will make you laugh with their ridiculousness, offensiveness and hilariousness!

\n

If you need a reminder that games can still be weird and irreverent, look no further than these beauties.

"}]]]>
10 video game baddies that really just need a hug https://www.gameskinny.com/h2u9f/10-video-game-baddies-that-really-just-need-a-hug https://www.gameskinny.com/h2u9f/10-video-game-baddies-that-really-just-need-a-hug Sat, 09 Jul 2016 17:02:49 -0400 Jenifyr Kaiser

Sometimes we all need a hug. Maybe you had a bad day at work or perhaps you just spilled a fresh cup of Starbucks all over your new pants. Those are moments that require hugs. I imagine that bad guys have those kinds of days too. Here are 10 video game baddies, in no particular order, that really just need a hug.

Nemesis -- Resident Evil

Yes he's scary. Yes he's kind of gross, but c'mon folks the guy just needs a hug. He's just doing what a humanoid bio-weapon is supposed to do. I'm sure he would of made better choices if he only had more opportunities as a baby Tyrant. 

King Pig -- Angry Birds

King Pig has no arms, no legs, and definitely no wings. He can't fly around like those mean Angry Birds. All he has are googly eyes and a stupid crown. Maybe that's why he cries so much. Poor guy. Give him a hug! 

Bowser -- Super Mario Brothers

Bowser is mean and evil and I used to think he was beyond redemption -- until I met his kid. Being a parent myself, I can definitely understand where the anger and frustration comes from. If my kid was anything like Bowser Jr., I'd need a hug too... and maybe a stiff drink. 

Wario - Warioland

I've got nothing here. Hug him if you like, but he's just awful. I bet he smells funny and what is up with those shoes? Seriously though, I don't like him. He did take out Rudy the Clown once though. I guess that's worth a hug. 

Sephiroth -- Final Fantasy VII

Good or Bad? Angel or Devil? Whatever. I'm hugging this guy and I'm first in line okay. I've been camped out in the "Hugs for Sephiroth" line all night. Seriously who wouldn't want to hug this hunky guy with his black leather and really long... sword. 

Wheatley -- Portal 2

Wheatley is a mess, but I probably would be too after being stuck in storage for as long as he was. Fortunately he did help us through the first four chapters of Portal 2 before that awful elevator shaft incident. Maybe a hug will make him a little smarter?

Tom Nook -- Animal Crossing

 

He's fuzzy and cute. I would definitely hug him if I didn't know what a money grubbing monster he really is under that awful sweater vest. What does he do with all the money? He doesn't invest in fashion, that's for sure. He doesn't even have hands, how does he count it all?

I will say this -- if nothing else Mr. Nook is teaching our children valuable lessons about the evils of revolving credit. For that, he gets a hug!

Goro -- Mortal Combat

All I'm saying is that he has 4 arms. That's twice the hugging power people! Twice! Hug the guy already. 

Little Sister -- Bioshock

 

She. Is. So. Cute! Look at those evil glowing eyes, that pasty skin, the blood stained dress, how could anyone not want to just take this little girl home and keep her forever? You know what, I'm going to give her a hug right now. Come here little girl... wait what's that noise? 

Purple Tentacle -- Day of the Tentacle

This is the guy, err... tentacle that started it all. He was doing it Sheldon J Plankton style long before Sponge Bob was even a twinkle is his mommy's eye. He's evil and he's purple and don't forget that sweet, sweet midi soundtrack. I'll probably stick to him with all those sucker things, but I'm going in for the hug anyway.  

I think all of these baddies deserve a hug for something they've done. Yes they did lots of evil, but no one is all bad. You'd be surprised what a hug can do. Hug a baddie today or hug someone you love. Heck, you can even hug a stranger if you think you can get away with it. Watch out for pepper spray. That definitely cuts down on the hugging appeal. Consensual hugs with strangers. That's the way to go. Yeah. Err... anyway you get the point. Go forth my minions and hug!  

]]>
Check Out These YouTubers' Renditions of Our Favorite Tunes! https://www.gameskinny.com/191s6/check-out-these-youtubers-renditions-of-our-favorite-tunes https://www.gameskinny.com/191s6/check-out-these-youtubers-renditions-of-our-favorite-tunes Thu, 07 Jul 2016 09:49:58 -0400 ChocolateCat42

From the orchestral magnificence that is Nobuo Uematsu's Final Fantasy themes to the whacky Portal tunes from GLaDoS, music plays a large role in the realm of video games.

Fans migrate towards mimicking that which inspires them -- and now, thanks to the internet, performers with amazing talents are able to share their video game covers with the rest of us. Listed below are a few of the greats -- give them a listen! If you like what you hear, don't forget to visit their channels and subscribe.

1. 331Erock

From Halo to Final Fantasy, 331Erock takes the songs we've come to know and love and gives them a metal makeover. He doesn't just stick to video game music, either -- anime, television, movies, you name it! (No, really. He likes getting requests from his listeners.) Software handles the accompaniment while Erock shreds on guitar. 

2. FamilyJules7X

On the topic of guitars, next up is FamilyJules7X with a mix of electric and acoustic renditions from several games. FamilyJules7X does covers, single-game medleys, and multi-game medleys. He even holds votes in the comments to make medleys from viewers' favorite themes, such as the battle themes in the video below.

3. Lindsey Stirling

Lindsey Stirling's violin is taking the world by storm, but did you know that she has done several covers for video game music? Dragon Age, Legend of Zelda, Halo...the list goes on. One of the draws to Lindsey is how much fun she has in her videos; full costumes, great scenery and/or effects, and dancing. 

4. Peter Hollens

Not all performers use instruments -- some can make magic with their voice alone. Almost all of Peter Hollens' covers are made up of layer upon layer of vocal tracks. His voice makes up both instrumental parts and lyrics. Most of his video game covers are collaborations, including the below World of Warcraft medley featuring his wife, Evynne Hollens, and his cover of Portal 2's ending theme.

5. Smooth McGroove

Also in the realm of acapella, we have Smooth McGroove's covers. Smooth covers a lot of classics in addition to more current themes. Various themes from franchise games like PokemonFinal Fantasy, Legend of Zelda, and Super Mario make up a portion of his repertoire, but he has also covered songs from games like Undertale and Tetris. 

This man's range is incredible, and I can't help being a little partial to his constant guest star. Don't know who I'm referring to? Look at my username again, then check out his videos. (Hint: upper left square in the video below.)

6. Collaborations

What's better than one amazing star sharing their talent with the world? Two or more getting together, of course! For instance, Peter Hollens and Lindsey Stirling have done several videos together, including their amazing Skyrim collaboration.

I had to be choosy picking which videos to share on this post, but each performer has several that you should check out if you enjoyed these samples. 

Have a performer you enjoy? Heard a cover or medley that you just have to share? Give us a holler in the comments below!

]]>
4 Silent Protagonist Characters That Are Actually Quiet https://www.gameskinny.com/0xp0v/4-silent-protagonist-characters-that-are-actually-quiet https://www.gameskinny.com/0xp0v/4-silent-protagonist-characters-that-are-actually-quiet Mon, 27 Jun 2016 10:51:55 -0400 CalendarV

[{"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/4/8/7/48763700-715ed.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/4/8/7/48763700-715ed.jpg","type":"slide","id":"124291","description":"

Many gamers just accept silent protagonists without doubts. But game developers often have good reasons for using silent player characters -- perhaps to help players immerse themselves in the game,or because of the lack of technology, or because too much recording would needed, etc. And gamers know that. We accept it.

\n

That is why some actually silent characters becomes special. The real quietness gives some extra characteristics to the characters that are unlike other protagonists.

\n

I believe that there are more actually silent characters out in the world of gaming. When you are playing some game with a protagonist that doesn't talk, it can be pretty fun to think about whether the character is just a seemingly silent character, or a character who is truly man/woman of few words!

"},{"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/h/e/chell-d3e5e.png","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/h/e/chell-d3e5e.png","type":"slide","id":"124290","description":"

4. Chell

\n

Chell is the protagonist in Portal series, a puzzle FPS developed by Valve Corporation. Erik Wolpaw, who wrote the dialogue for Portal and wrote Portal 2 with other people, felt that the personality of Chell wasn't really important for making Portal.

\n

GLaDOS, the nefarious artificially intelligent operating system, is irritated by Chell's silence -- saying "Are you even listening to me?". Wheatley, another AI from Portal 2, asks Chell to jump, instead of talk, to respond his questions. As these examples suggest, characters in Portal series DO understand that Chell is a silent woman.

"},{"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/d/i/s/dishonored-mainjpg-6e4e98-1280w-83603.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/d/i/s/dishonored-mainjpg-6e4e98-1280w-83603.jpg","type":"slide","id":"124289","description":"

3. Corvo Attano

\n

Corvo Attano is the protagonist of Dishonored, a stealth action game developed by Arcane Studios. Corvo does communicate inside the game through actions such as killing, hugging, and giving stuff -- but he isn't very talkative.

\n

Even in Dishonored's DLC "The Brigmore Witches", where Corvo appears as an NPC, he does not have a single line. Dishonored's writer has talked about about Corvo's silence before:

\n
\n

I'm biased, of course, but I think Dishonored grips you much more viscerally, more emotionally. And that's on purpose. Corvo doesn't talk and I think it works because everybody knows what Corvo would have to say.

\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/f/e/a/feature-successfailuresilence-halflife-650-eb222.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/e/a/feature-successfailuresilence-halflife-650-eb222.jpg","type":"slide","id":"124288","description":"

2. Gordon Freeman

\n

Gordon Freeman is the protagonist of the Half-Life series, a famous FPS franchise developed by Valve Corporation. Valve didn't include any lines for Gordon Freeman, so that it would be easier for a player to immerse themselves in the game.

\n

His quietness is not only just something set by Valve. In Half-Life 2, a character named Alyx Vance humorously jokes about Gordon's silence, saying:

\n
\n

Man of few words, aren't you?

\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/f/i/r/firered-leafgreen-red-5cf89.png","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/r/firered-leafgreen-red-5cf89.png","type":"slide","id":"124287","description":"

1. Red

\n

Red is the default name for the protagonist of the first generation Pokémon games. He does not have his own lines during the entire game, and other NPCs infer Red's situation from the items he has or other things that might show what Red wants.

\n

In the second generation of Pokémon games, he is the hidden final boss of the game. His only line in the second generation games is "......". As such, many Pokémon fans consider Red as a cool and chic, silent character.

"},{"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/s/i/l/silent-0acdc.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/s/i/l/silent-0acdc.jpg","type":"slide","id":"124286","description":"

"Silent protagonist" usually refers to a player character in video game that does not speak throughout the whole game, except for short sounds or interjections. But quite a number of silent protagonists are not actually silent in-game. Other characters inside the game acknowledge them as a normal person who talks.

\n

For example, in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, the protagonist doesn't speak with voice -- but makes conversations with other NPCs throughout the story.

\n

Today, we're counting down some of the most silent protagonists in all of gaming. These characters are not just lacking voiceover -- they're also silent throughout their respective games and don't make any sort of conversation. 

"}]]]>
Games That Need Backwards Compatibility For Xbox One https://www.gameskinny.com/tis3q/games-that-need-backwards-compatibility-for-xbox-one https://www.gameskinny.com/tis3q/games-that-need-backwards-compatibility-for-xbox-one Mon, 30 May 2016 10:51:39 -0400 Tom Clark

With the Bioshock series finally being added to the list of Xbox One backwards compatible games, I'm happy, but not yet satisfied. Here's a list of the games I think need to be added to the backwards compatible list.

Portal 2

 

Portal is already backwards compatible, so why not add on the award winning sequel? This is one of those games everyone needs to experience, and bringing it to Xbox One will allow even more gamers to do so. As one of my favorite games, it's a shame this game hasn't yet been added.

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

 

It's shocking how this game has yet to be put on the list. As one of the most popular games on the Xbox 360, I'm sure many others are also patiently waiting for the medieval RPG to be added.

Dark Souls 2

 

The games predecessor Dark Souls is on the list, but for those looking to try their hand at Dark Souls 2 they'll have to wait. You can currently purchase an Xbox One addition of the game, but for those who already own it. Unfortunately, it'll probably be a while till Dark Souls 2 is added.

Batman: Arkham Series

 

Akrham Asylum and Arkham City were some of the best games for the Xbox 360, yet not a single addition to the Batman Arkham series is compatible. It would be nice to give some gamers who've only played Arkham Knight a chance to experience these classics.

With Microsoft continually expanding the list, I wouldn't be surprised to see some of these titles become compatible this summer. For now, there's a decent list, plus the huge Xbox One library of games, so I doubt you'll ever have trouble finding a game to play.

]]>
Game-Based Learning: How Teachers Use Video Games in Education https://www.gameskinny.com/vp3qn/game-based-learning-how-teachers-use-video-games-in-education https://www.gameskinny.com/vp3qn/game-based-learning-how-teachers-use-video-games-in-education Tue, 03 May 2016 07:30:02 -0400 ESpalding

The way in which we educate our children is constantly changing, as is the technologies and resources available to teachers. Game-based learning is not a new concept but in a time when children have more access to video games through mobile technology and home computers, it is something schools have started incorporating into their curriculum.

Speaking at the Future of Education Technology Conference (FETC) in 2013, Katie Salen (a professor at DePaul University College of Computing and Digital Media in Chicago) stated that there are six main reasons for incorporating game-based learning in the classroom. 

Everyone can participate

Whether it be through multiplayer or participating in forums and collaboration, everyone gets to be a part of the outcome. There are many educational games in the marketplace that have multiplayer settings. Games such as Sid Meyer's Civilization series allow students to play against each other in a turn-based strategy scenario where it is the aim to build a civilization and explore other cultures, learn about trade and become the greatest leader the World has ever seen. Alternatively, students can work together, debate about which technological discoveries to pursue next, who would be a good trade partner, etc. Working together and winning makes students feel like they have been part of a successful team and builds confidence and essential teamwork skills which they will need in later life.

The challenge is constant

Students can be continually tested as games get progressively harder and more complex. In this way, they can develop new ways of thinking. Take the cute puzzle game Cut the Rope by ZeptoLab as an example. Most people just see it as trying to feed Om Nom his candy, but as each level gets progressively harder, students are required to work through and solve each problem. One level may be as simple as cutting a few ropes, but then higher levels bring in obstacles such as bubbles or bees which require you to figure out a new strategy. Students must be flexible in their thinking and have to continually adapt to new challenges.

Feedback is immediate and ongoing

Children thrive on feedback. Whether it is good or bad, both greatly help in their development. In video games, the feedback in many games is instant – you pass a level, or you don't. When students complete a level or task, they are proud of their achievements, and it spurs them to continue and do more. When they don't do so great, getting that feedback makes them more determined to do better. In some games aimed at infants, a lot of the feedback is in the form of audio. For instance, the BBC has a website and app aimed at children of which there are many educational games for them to play. The games are based on the characters in the TV shows the channel plays. In some of the games, the child can hear their favourite characters say "Well done!" or "You are doing great!" and even "Uh-oh! That's not right. Try again". They get feedback while playing the game, not to mention the fact that they get excited because their favourite character is giving them praise and reassurance.

Learning happens by doing

"For the things we have to learn before we can do them, we learn by doing them." - Aristotle, The Nicomachean Ethics

Many studies have seen that when people learn by doing, they are more likely to succeed and get a better understanding of the task they need to perform/learn. None more so than children. If for example, you wanted to teach your class how to wire a plug, instead of just telling them how to do it, you'd break out plugs and cable cutoffs and get them doing it. The same can be applied to certain video games. If you wanted to teach children about construction and structure, one game that could help would be World of Goo. The physics-based puzzle game developed by 2D Boy requires players to make stable structures such as bridges, ladders, and towers by moving black goo balls from one place to another. Players also have to deal with wind speed, gravity and buoyancy issues. World of Goo enables students to learn about basic construction as well as solving problems some structures may face due to wind effects.

 

There are many opportunities to experience failure

Failure isn't always a bad thing. It is one of the main ways in which we learn. "By trial and error" some would say. One aspect of game-based learning is that it helps children understand that failing something is ok and is just another excuse to learn from it, try again and succeed. Any of the popular puzzle games on the market cater to this. Games such as Amanita's Machinarium are full of puzzles which must be completed to progress in the game. If an attempt fails, students must then learn from what they've done and change their solution. Sometimes it may take a few attempts, but with each attempt students learning and evolve in their way of thinking.

 

Solving problems build expertise

This is very similar to the point above. The more problems a student solves, the more they are learning and are then able to pass knowledge on to their classmates. Students will retain the information which makes them more confident when dealing with similar problems.

 

 

There are some major games on the market that have grown so much in popularity, in the teaching field, that education specific versions of the games have been developed. The most popular at the moment is Mojang's Minecraft. An educational version, MinecraftEDU, was released in January 2016 by Microsoft, and it has already gained a huge following. The version was originally developed by Finland-based independent developer TeacherGaming and was already 4-years-old when Microsoft brought it. At the moment, teachers in 40 different countries use MinecraftEDU for lessons in an estimated 7,000 classrooms. Anthony Salcito, Microsoft's Vice President of Worldwide Education, says that with the right tools this could increase. In an interview with the BBC he said:

"Teachers are using Minecraft to do so many things, including teaching maths, science, religion and poetry. Once we make the tools easier for schools to get access to and employ, I think you'll see that number of classrooms grow quite quickly."

MinecraftEDU has been used in every subject area from STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Maths) to Language, to History and Art. Some of the concepts and lesson plans have even been tested in line with the US Common Core Standards to make teachers aware of where the game sits regarding the curriculum.

 

As well as Minecraft, another popular game in game-based learning is Portal 2. The website Teach with Portals has a whole host of resources and lesson plans dedicated to "playing with Portals". It is supported and developed by Valve and is accessible through STEAM for SCHOOLS. All the lessons meet Common Core Standards and can be used for Math, Game Design, and Language Arts but its primary use in education is in Physics. Using the DLC program Portal 2 Puzzle Maker, teachers can create their own puzzles. As the game is built around physical principles such as mass and weight, acceleration, momentum, gravity, and energy, there is a lot of scope for creating fun and informative lessons.

Some people are still skeptical about game-based learning, or the gamification of education, but studies have shown that there is a benefit to incorporating games into lessons plans. One such study by Richard Blunt. Ph.D. titled Does Game-Based Learning Work? concluded that when three educational games were included in the University curriculum for some Business and Technology, Economics and Management students, they scored higher than the students who did not use any games in their classes. Identical testing situations were employed in all courses while data collected included game use, test scores, gender, ethnicity, and age. There was no significant difference between genders or ethnicity groups, however, students aged 40 years and under, scored significantly higher than those aged 41 and above.

Game-based learning is an area which is constantly being researched and discussed in the teaching and game development communities. While schools and other educational facilities aim for new ways of engaging their students, game-based learning is something that is becoming more prevalent.

Do you think that game-based learning is a way forward in education? Do children really learn better when video games are used as part of their learning? We'd love to hear your thoughts on the matter.

References

Does Game-Based Learning Work? Results from Three Recent Studies - Richard Blunt Ph.D. (2013)

Katie Salen information from Game Design: The End of Education - https://thejournal.com/articles/2013/02/07/game-design-the-key-to-education

Resources

TeacherGaming - https://www.teachergaming.com/

Learning works for Kids - http://learningworksforkids.com/

Teach with Portals - http://www.teachwithportals.com/

MinecraftEDU - http://education.minecraft.net/minecraftedu/

CBeebies - http://www.bbc.co.uk/cbeebies/games

]]>
Games for Grandparents and Grandchildren: Old Dogs Can Learn New Tricks https://www.gameskinny.com/fw6is/games-for-grandparents-and-grandchildren-old-dogs-can-learn-new-tricks https://www.gameskinny.com/fw6is/games-for-grandparents-and-grandchildren-old-dogs-can-learn-new-tricks Tue, 03 May 2016 06:16:58 -0400 The Soapbox Lord

“I just don’t understand those, whatchamacallit? Damgummed vidja games you play. They don’t make any blasted sense to me.”

One of my grandparents once told me something not too far removed from that sentence. My cousin and I were sitting down playing my brand-new copy of The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker on my still shiny, purple Gamecube. (Oh yeah, I am going wayyyy back to 2002.) My cousin and I did our best to explain video games to the bewildered, older person, but our eleven-year-old selves couldn’t convince the grandparent that games were anything other than the preconceptions they held.

You tell those young whippersnappers!

You tell those young whippersnappers!

Just fourteen years later, I have met several grandparents and older adults who either play video games with their younger family members or have expressed an interest in the idea. With that in mind, here's a list of somewhat recent titles that might be starting points for grandparents who want to play games with their grandchildren. Who knows? Maybe you will be playing one of these games and it will catch your grandparent’s eye like no Bingo game ever could.

This is a varied list. Some of these games will be more difficult to play than others, and some of these games are aimed more at mature players than others. I've included descriptions with each entry so you have an idea of what the game is before scurrying off to entice your victim loved one to play.

Let’s get started!

 

Juju 

Available on Steam, Playstation 3, and Xbox 360.

Can two players play at the same time?  Yes 

Control complexity?  Minimal

Juju is an extremely cute platformer ( a game where you navigate obstacles and collect floating, shiny things) starring a pink panda bear and his best friend Peyo, who just so happens to be an anthropomorphic snake. (Because video games okay?) Juju and Peyo get into some trouble and wind up releasing an evil bat that kidnaps Juju’s dad and places some dark magic on Juju’s home forest. It’s up to Juju and Peyo to save the day!

The gameplay is almost as simple as the plot for this one. Players control their choice of the two characters, and their partner controls the other. Players navigate levels filled with obstacles, enemies, and tons of floating, shiny objects to collect! The game goes out of its way to entice newcomers to play. The character of Peyo has skills Juju does not, and he is also less targeted by enemies, allowing his player to simply enjoy the game.

The controls in Juju are also simple. You control your character and have buttons to jump and perform an attack. There are five buttons used at most, making this ideal for all newcomers.

Juju’s novice-friendly design makes it a great choice for either enticing grandparents or younger grandchildren. If you want more information about the game, I actually wrote a review about it here! (Shameless self-promotion for the win!)

 

Yoshi’s Woolly World  

Available on the WiiU.

Can two players play at the same time?  Yes

Control complexity?  Minimal

Much like the aforementioned Juju, Yoshi’s Woolly World is a platformer where you navigate obstacles, defeat enemies, and collect shiny objects. What separates the two is the degree of difficulty and art style. The world of Woolly (the full title is a mouthful) is presented as living yarn, and yes, it is as adorable as it sounds. The art style makes the game appealing to players of all ages and can bring a smile to the face of the most cynical of players, such as myself.

The cute is strong with this one.

Players have the options of four different controllers for playing this one. You have the option of the Wii U Gamepad, the Wii U Pro Controller, the Wiimote, and the Classic Controller. As with Juju, there are essentially five buttons used in gameplay. When playing with another person, both people can also use different controllers, depending on their preference.  

 

Woolly is also more difficult than Juju. If Juju’s difficulty was rated at a 1 on a scale from 0-10, Wooly would fall somewhere between a 2 or a 3. Just something to keep in mind for newer players. The game allows two people to play simultaneously, so grandma can help you snag all of those collectibles!

 

Katamari series

Available on Playstation 3 and Xbox 360.

Can two players play at the same time? Depends on the game from what I can gather. 

Control complexity? Moderate

The Katamari series is an example of simplicity done beautifully. The objective of the game is to roll around large environments and collecting everything into a large ball of, well, everything. There is some story about replacing the stars, but all you need to know is you can collect virtually anything into your giant roving ball of objects. It’s a game that is simple to grasp and enjoy.

Here’s the game in action.

 

The controls are slightly more demanding than the previous titles mentioned, but they don't take long to become comfortable. The controls are similar to controlling the treads on a tank. If you want to go forward, you move both sticks forward. If you want to turn, you push the stick forward on the side you wish to turn. It's slightly more complicated, but not enough to completely alienate people. You can see more of the controls here.

Guitar Hero and Rock Band  

Available on Playstation 3&4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One

Can two players play at the same time? Two and more!

Control complexity? Depends on your difficulty and instrument, but minimal to difficult.

The Guitar Hero and Rock Band series are unique as they can provide an enjoyable experience for newcomers and experts alike. The Rock Band games have modes where you cannot fail, and instead, can simply enjoy the music and your attempts to play it. If your grandparents don’t have the dexterity for the guitar, let them beat the drums to death. If drums aren’t their thing, give them a mic and have them wail to the classics they know and love!

The controls complexity depends on the difficulty you decide to play. Each difficulty adds a new button for the guitar and drums. For singing, it makes some notes harder to hit and adds more difficult pitches and sections. There's a reason these games have become hit party games though. There is a difficulty level for all players to enjoy!

With a large library of songs included with the base game and a huge selection of songs available to download, there’s bound to be some songs your grandparents enjoy. These games can provide an evening of fun for the whole family to enjoy. Before you know it, you’ll have a garage band and participate in the local battle of the bands.

 It may or may not make your grandmother a badass metalhead.

 

Mario series

Available on the WiiU

Can two players play at the same time? Two and more!

Control complexity? Minimal

Gaming’s most iconic mascot has been the star of countless games that have entranced beginners and veterans alike for years. His newest games are no different. The newest titles on the WiiU are a step up in difficulty from the prior entries on this list, but they also have various modes for beginners and support for more than two players. Now grandma and grandpa both can get in on quashing Bowser’s plans!

 The Mario series is one of the longest-running and most iconic game franchises of all time, yet has managed to retain its charming simplicity throughout all of the years. The controls are simple to learn and easy to master, using six buttons at the most. The challenge comes not from the controls but being precise. However, the series has always been friendly for newcomers and remains welcoming to all.

 

Super Smash Bros

Available on the Wii U

Can two players play at the same time? Two and more!

Control complexity? Moderate

Now this might be a confusing entry. The Smash series is known for its depth, and the skill displayed by pros at tournaments is mindboggling. The game still remains inviting for newcomers. I have hooked several unbelieving friends with a few rounds of Smash. The game is more complicated and has more controls than some entries here, but it remains a simple one to learn and enjoy.

This is easily the most complex game mentioned here in regards to controls. The game only uses about eight buttons (no matter which of the four controllers you choose to use), but there are multiple uses for many moves tied to these few buttons. Despite that, the game remains a frantic and enjoyable experience, even if you aren't sure exactly what is going on onscreen (which is me when playing most fighting games).

With all of the sheer chaos occurring onscreen, you may not be exactly sure what just happened, but you know it looked awesome and can’t wait to continue playing. The game allows up to eight people to play, and players can customize the amount of zaniness in matches and adjust things accordingly as needed. Just don’t complain when Great-grandma Anita wipes the floor with you.

 

Madden games

Available on anything. These games are literally available everywhere on every platform.

Can two players play at the same time? Two and more!

Control complexity? Moderate 

Now before you question this choice, hear me out. During some summers, I would visit my cousin, and we generally ending up playing video games. One day my uncle expressed interest in playing. Giddy with excitement, we naturally started him with the worst possible choice, Mass Effect. He called defeat with a few short, but oh so hilarious, minutes.

Next, we tried Call of Duty, he fared a little better, but he could not grasp the concept of operating two joysticks simultaneously. After my cousin met many a death at the hands of his dad’s grenades, we admitted defeat. My uncle then laid his eyes on Madden and being the football fanatic he is, asked to give it a whirl. My cousin and I decided it couldn’t be any worse than the other games, so we gave it a shot. We have regretted it ever since.

My uncle’s knowledge of football outweighed his lack of gaming skills, and he managed to defeat us over and over again. Things got to the point where he was asking us to play him because he wanted to try more advanced tactics.

I mention this story because you never know which games newcomers will do well when first introduced to gaming. If your grandparent has any interest in football, give Madden a shot. The controls are relatively simple, and the commands are usually posted on the screen for quick reference. Plays are assigned to a button so you know which play you are picking. Actions such as running, stiff-arm, and juking are all tied to individual buttons which are usually displayed before the ball is snapped. Each receiver is also assigned a button, so you know which receiver you are throwing the ball to with every play. 

You can also play the game together on the same team to help ease newcomers into the game. It’s a great idea for those who love sports, and an excellent starting point for the world of games.

 

There are plenty of games grandparents can play with their grandchildren, or can be used to entice your grandparent to give the world of gaming a shot. Star Fox Zero for the WiiU has an invincibility mode for newcomers. Pikmin 3 for the WiiU allows two captains to cooperate and attempt to salvage their spaceship to escape a hostile planet. Rocket League is a more advanced title, but for those who want a challenging and entertaining cooperative experience, look no further. For the truly awesome grandparents, look into Portal 2 for some cooperative, puzzle-solving goodness!

All of these titles I’ve mentioned are barely a drop in the ocean of family/grandparent-friendly games available.  Give these titles a shot, and see what happens. You never know. Maybe your grandparents have mad player skills waiting to be unleashed! After all, I can count the number of times I have beaten my uncle in Madden on one hand. Do not underestimate your opponent!

Do you have any games you play with your grandparents or grandchildren? Let us know in the comments below!

 

]]>
Portal 2: My Favorite Moments https://www.gameskinny.com/gcjv9/portal-2-my-favorite-moments https://www.gameskinny.com/gcjv9/portal-2-my-favorite-moments Sun, 24 Apr 2016 07:40:41 -0400 Mark Elgie

[{"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/8/8/6/886cbf9fae59802611bc78199a890fb2-lightbox-cf8a9.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/8/8/6/886cbf9fae59802611bc78199a890fb2-lightbox-cf8a9.jpg","type":"slide","id":"113300","description":"

So that's my list of my favorite moments in Portal 2. Stephen Merchant did excellent work as Wheatley. I was pleased hearing The National in the game with their original song "Exile Vilify." I really enjoyed the journey you take into Aperture's past, learning of its bright start and its dark and disturbing fall from grace. The last Rat Man den and the Oracle Turret also raises a lot of questions, and has sparked a lot of debate among fans. Some have even tried spotting Rattmann in the game. What are your favorite moments in the game? Let me know down in the comments! Now if you'll excuse me, I'm gonna go add Exile Vilify to my iTunes library.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/272765c55b779197ec496b96728d3698.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/272765c55b779197ec496b96728d3698.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"8132","description":"
5. Wheatley's pleas for you to kill yourself
\n

At the beginning of Chapter 9, also known as "The Part Where He Kills You," Wheatley's what he thinks is the perfect death trap for you: a platform surrounded by several spiked plates, with no means of escape. Except, there's totally a means of escape. Conversion gel is dripping from a pipe nearby, and through the use of portal technology, you find that means of escape. Then you scurry away and Wheatley begs you to come back. If you respect his request and come back, he'll admit he didn't plan for this outcome, and then basically just asks you to kill yourself by jumping into the abyss, enticing you by saying that you'll find your parents down there, a boy band, a triple portal device, etc. If you do jump down, he'll express his surprise and say he didn't think that would work. 

\n

The scene is pretty amusing; just hearing the things Wheatley comes up with to entice Chell into jumping into the pit, like the pony farm, it's clear that he's desperate, and at the same time, he kind of knows that it won't work. 

\n

There's a similar scene towards the end of Chapter 9, only this time with a "masher" at the end of a conveyor. Here, he doesn't sugarcoat things any and instead says that taking the ride into the masher would be the more dignified way to die. 

\n

\n

Stephen Merchant shines as Wheatley in these two scenes. It makes me wonder how many of his lines were written as opposed to being improvised (Merchant was given room to improvise as Wheatley). 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/e427ec806e9b4c73d4516d395666744c.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/e427ec806e9b4c73d4516d395666744c.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"8120","description":"
4. The Final Rat Man Den & The Oracle Turret
\n

If you keep close to the wall in this small area, you'll hear a voice that speaks in utter gibberish. It's the belief of most players that the voice is that of Doug Rattmann who, by the time the events of Portal 2 take place, is long dead.  

\n

This last Rat Man den is, in my opinion, the creepiest. The den is unique in the way that it is the only one of the seven dens in which you hear the disembodied voice of someone who's been dead for years, decades, perhaps even centuries. The voice has sparked spirited debate, and several people have worked to decode the message the Ghost of Rattmann leaves behind for whoever finds this hidden alcove. 

\n

\n

The graffiti present in the den also foreshadows events to come later on in the game. At the end of the hallway, near the fan, there's a piece of graffiti that contains an odd poem: 

\n
\n

The bell invites

\n

Hear the turret for

\n

It is knell

\n

That summons to

\n

Heaven or to Hell. 

\n
\n

This poem refers to something known as the Oracle Turret.

\n

Early in the game, while making your escape with Wheatley, you come across a turret that doesn't attack you when you come across its field of vision. In fact, it sits in a pile of junk. "I'm different," it says as you walk past. Doug Rattmann touches on this same turret in the poem found in the last Rat Man den. Later on in the game, while moving around the inner workings of the modern Aperture facility, you see the same turret about to be disposed of. Pick it up, and you'll be privy to a few snippets of information, some foreshadowing future events.

\n

\n

As heard in the video, the turret mentions how Prometheus was cast down into the Earth's depths and pecked by birds for giving the gift of knowledge to mankind (Like GLaDOS was), and that "the answer is beneath us." Before Wheatley even mentions the fact that only the top layer of the facility has been explored so far, we're given vague hints to that fact from an oracle turret. 

\n

The information that the Rat Man den and the Oracle Turret provide, even when taken together, doesn't make sense until later in the game. It's one of my favourite moments because of the questions that it raises. How does the Oracle Turret know about the significance of lemonade here? How does it know all this? Could it be that this Oracle Turret is Cave Johnson, and that he was uploaded into a computer after all? It would certainly explain why they knew about the significance of Lemonade and the true identity of GLaDOS. And what about Rattmann? How did he know about the turret in the first place? So many questions.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/081b58903a4db9973c9878d6dda2021d.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/081b58903a4db9973c9878d6dda2021d.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"8122","description":"
3. A history lesson
\n

 Roughly halfway through the game, you and Wheatley overthrow GLaDOS and put him in charge in place of her. Almost immediately, Wheatley lets his newfound power get to his head, uploads GLaDOS into a potato battery, then throws her into the elevator with you and pounds it down into the ground, causing its support to give out and send both you and her falling miles down into a section of Aperture Science that time forgot. And were the company still in business at the time this game takes place, they'd probably rather you forgot about it as well.

\n

Exploring the old, condemned Aperture facility, from the way it was in 1952 until the 1980s, allows the player to experience the journey Aperture, and its founder and CEO, Cave Johnson (played by the spectacular J.K. Simmons), took in getting the company started up as a shower curtain manufacturer, experiencing success in science innovation, and their fall from grace when the true nature of their experiments came to light. Experiments like turning someone's blood into gasoline, and having a superconductor pointed at someone (resulting in getting a tumor or best case scenario, superpowers). Oh and apparently making lemonade was planned as well at some point. But the plan was scrapped. 

\n

\n

It's also revealed in Johnson's rant how exactly GLaDOS was brought into being. It's because of the rich lore the old facility contains about Aperture as a whole that it's one of my favorite moments in the game. It is, for all intents and purposes, a history lesson, and one that I actually enjoy. Kind of sad, really. 

"},{"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/8/0/0/800px-portal2rattmann3-a16ed.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/8/0/0/800px-portal2rattmann3-a16ed.jpg","type":"slide","id":"113376","description":"
2. Exile Vilify
\n

In Chapter 2 of the game, you find a radio in the Rat Man den found in an alcove in Test Chamber 03. This radio plays an original song written exclusively for Portal 2 by The National, called "Exile Vilify."

\n

\n

The lyrics of the song were composed by The National, and were reviewed by Valve to ensure that they fit with the tone of the Rat Man dens. While that may be true, since Rattmann put his life on the line in order to ensure Chell's survival, I feel it would also be true for Chell as well. In the midst of vilifications and possibilities of death at the hands of GLaDOS, and later Wheatley, Chell always found a way to stay alive. Does it feel like a trial? I'm sure it would have felt a lot like a trial. That and the song's pretty catchy as well.

\n

Here's the video that won 1.00000000001th place in Portal 2's music video contest, a visual retelling of Valve's Portal 2: Lab Rat comic made by MikeMov89Portal2:

\n

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/8f2dca705444189e3fefcd1ae12bd52f.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,q_80/v1/gameskinny/8f2dca705444189e3fefcd1ae12bd52f.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"8112","description":"
1. Meeting Wheatley
\n

Right off the bat, after completing a brief controls tutorial, you meet your partner for the first half of the game, the eccentric personality core, and all-around moron, Wheatley. He comes by, seemingly with good intentions, with a plan to help Chell, the protagonist, escape Aperture.

\n

Wheatley immediately makes an impression, mentioning Chell may have brain damage and brushing it off like its not a big deal. He then rips her suspension chamber from its support and runs off toward the testing track with it like a driver under the influence, knocking over other suspension chambers and talking about how the Aperture management staff has it in for him. And to actually access the testing track, Wheatley uses your suspension chamber as a makeshift battering ram. It's pretty surreal. It feels like one of those VR attractions at a major amusement park somewhere, Disney World for instance. It makes for a memorable way to start off the game. 

\n

The writing of the scene is humorous, but of course, writing is but one part of the process. The actor needs to bring life to the writing, and Stephen Merchant does a fantastic job of getting across Wheatley's talkative, stammering dialogue.

\n

 

\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/p/o/r/portal-1920x1080-9bfe3.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/p/o/r/portal-1920x1080-9bfe3.jpg","type":"slide","id":"112833","description":"

This month marks the fifth anniversary of the release of Portal 2. Exponentially longer than the first game in the series, Portal 2 expanded on the mechanic of navigating and transporting objects via portals by introducing a mechanic from another game, Tag Team's Tag: The Power of Paint, which was developed by some students from the DigiPen Institute of Technology. The game included various colored paint gels, each with different properties. Red paint would cause the player to move faster. Blue paint would allow the player to walk on any surface. The game's designers were hired by Valve to work on Portal 2, resulting in puzzles that not only employed the use of portals, but also the use of these coloured gels. The result was what PC Gamer called "The best game of the year." Doug Lombardi, director of marketing at Valve, said that "Portal was a test bed. Portal 2 is a game." Gabe Newell has called Portal 2 the "best game we've ever done," and make no mistake -- Portal 2 is an excellent title. To celebrate its fifth year anniversary, I'll be listing my favorite moments in the game. Enjoy!

\n

Disclaimer: This article assumes the reader has played and beaten Portal 2 and there are spoilers ahead. You have been warned. 

"}]]]>
Most Creative Game-Inspired Crochet Projects https://www.gameskinny.com/3sh3x/most-creative-game-inspired-crochet-projects https://www.gameskinny.com/3sh3x/most-creative-game-inspired-crochet-projects Wed, 30 Mar 2016 06:52:51 -0400 ESpalding

Sometimes people love gaming so much that they decide to make tributes to their favourite character, game, or even console. And it's no exception for those who love to crochet. The crochet world is full of tributes and game-inspired designs. It's been hard to pick just a handful of yarny creations to show you, but I've managed to narrow it down to a few awesome creations.

1. Minecraft Blanket

Minecraft

This incredible piece was made by Crafty Ridge Designs. It's the perfect partnership - Minecraft and crochet! I think my favorite block on this blanket is either Enderman or MooShroom.

2. Umbrella Corp Pillow

Resident Evil

Who would have thought that a game such as Resident Evil could inspire someone to make something out of yarn?! Well, that is exactly what happened with KristinaCrochet -- and the result is fantastic!

3. Five Nights at Freddy's Amigurumi toys

Five Nights at Freddy's

Here we have Freddy, Bonnie, Chica and Foxy from the twisted Five Nights at Freddy's, and they have never been cuter! They come from the mind of Deviant artist MilesofCrochet.

4. Haunter hat and scarf set

Pokémon

Even if you don't catch 'em all, at least with this snazzy hat and scarf set from Yarnslinger's Nook, you aren't gonna catch a cold. If Haunter isn't your style, who would you like to dress up warm as?

5. Amigurumi Kirby

Kirby

Any fan of Kirby would be over the moon after receiving this little dude as a gift. Created by Nerdigurumi, they have caught all of Kirby's cuteness in this creation.

6. 2DS Pokéball cover

Pokémon

We don't want our handheld consoles getting scratched or mucky, do we? Icrochetthings must have felt the same way when she created this awesome cover. Obviously, it doesn't have to be just for your 2DS. You could use it to store anything that would fit (3DS maybe?).

7. Triforce Fingerless Mittens

Zelda

Level Up Nerd Apparel really got it right when they designed these Triforce fingerless mittens. Any Zelda fan would love these!

8. NES Controller Blanket

Nintendo

For the retro fans among us, I give you this NES Controller blanket created by My Victoria Rose. I can't believe how incredible it is! They even included the wire. Great detail!

9. Wheatley

Portal 2

Wasn't Wheatley great? Even though he did nearly ruin everything. Gemugurumi's yarny recreation really is lovely. It's a spitting image!

10. Little Sister doll

BioShock 2

This is a pretty creepy doll -- made even more so due to the fact that she is holding an ADAM needle. Shady Creations has made this amazing Little Sister from BioShock 2, and it really captures them in all their gloom.

These are just a tiny proportion of crocheted game-inspired creations out there. Is you could have something made out of yarn from your favorite game, what would it be?

]]>
Top 7 Games That Can Totally Destroy Your Relationship https://www.gameskinny.com/ja5sc/top-7-games-that-can-totally-destroy-your-relationship https://www.gameskinny.com/ja5sc/top-7-games-that-can-totally-destroy-your-relationship Wed, 30 Mar 2016 07:30:01 -0400 David Fisher

[{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/o/t/r/otryyxqvpfh9nrejk8ky-e3816.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/o/t/r/otryyxqvpfh9nrejk8ky-e3816.jpg","type":"slide","id":"108868","description":"

#1: Fire Emblem: Fates

\n

Nothing hurts like betrayal, and there is more than enough of this to be found in Fire Emblem: Fates. If it wasn't bad enough that you found out that your significant other has a new waifu/husbando in the latest Nintendo strategy RPG, you also find out that they have joined the ranks of those Hoshidan dogs!

\n

Such treachery will destroy even the most tightly-knit relationships. No heart can forgive one who decides to put their blood before love! But now is not the time for words. They must be shown the error of their ways.

\n

For the glory of Nohr!

\n

What games would you have added to this list? Are there any games that have tested any of your relationships in the past? Leave your ideas in the comments section below!

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/d/o/a/doaxbv-kasumi-sunbath-2efd6.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/d/o/a/doaxbv-kasumi-sunbath-2efd6.jpg","type":"slide","id":"108863","description":"

#2: Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball (Series)

\n

This is certainly one of those games you will have a hard time explaining to your partner. Regardless of whether you are male, female, heterosexual, homosexual, or somewhere in between, chances are your significant other won't exactly appreciate finding this game in your library.

\n

As if Dead or Alive wasn't bad enough with its overzealously bouncing titties, DOAXBV glorifies this in its glorious bikini-clad beach volleyball glory. This is more than likely one of the games you want to hide or rinse your hands clean of before you ask your partner to choose a game to play from your pile.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/1/8/3/183539-mario-party-333e8.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/1/8/3/183539-mario-party-333e8.jpg","type":"slide","id":"108864","description":"

#3: Mario Party (Series)

\n

It just wouldn't be a relationship ruining list without good ol' Mario Party. While Monopoly may have the paper and plastic throne, Mario Party secures the title of the video game most likely to cause emotional distress. Why? Because unlike any other multiplayer game out there, Mario Party is one of the few that will ask you if you are sure that you want to ruin the day of your opponent.

\n

Should you choose to steal a star from the light of your life, you may be seeing more than enough stars during your next argument.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/7/f/0/7f0b4bc0-6a3a-4858-adfb-6f9fa5110fae-80814.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/7/f/0/7f0b4bc0-6a3a-4858-adfb-6f9fa5110fae-80814.jpg","type":"slide","id":"108865","description":"

#4: Mario Kart (Series)

\n

While the Super Mario franchise is mostly presented as a light-hearted and fun atmosphere for gamers to get immersed in, the multiplayer games starring the Italian Superhero Plumber are anything but. Mario Kart is a prime example of this as the kart racing series is known for inducing the most heated of temper tantrums in even the most mature gamers.

\n

If you really want to ruin your relationship, just stroll down to 4th place or lower, grab a blue shell, and reap what you sow.

\n

You have been warned.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/m/a/x/maxresdefault-97a20.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/m/a/x/maxresdefault-97a20.jpg","type":"slide","id":"108860","description":"

#5: Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes

\n

The premise of Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes is simple. Give one player a bomb, and give the other one a set of instructions on how to disarm each bomb the first player can encounter based on descriptions. Seems simple enough, right?

\n

Wrong.

\n

Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes will test the fortitude of your relationship. With a set timer ready to go off at even the slightest error, you and your partner will have your communication skills pushed to their limit. Expect cursing, swearing, and unintelligible shouting when you play this game. Only the strongest of relationships will escape this game unscathed.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/m/a/x/maxresdefault-82a6b.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/m/a/x/maxresdefault-82a6b.jpg","type":"slide","id":"108880","description":"

#6: Portal 2

\n

Working together to solve puzzles seems like a simple enough way to pass the time, right? Wrong.

\n

In Portal 2's co-op mode, players must navigate precision puzzles with the aid of their partners. The problem with this is primarily communication. However, some partners are not nearly as kind as others.

\n

Should you dare to wade the waters of Portal 2's co-op mode, pray that your partner has the patience to deal with your occasional practical joke of sending them head first into an acid bath.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/f/a/n/fantasy-mmorpg-mmo-games-4story-player-stall-3eaf4.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/f/a/n/fantasy-mmorpg-mmo-games-4story-player-stall-3eaf4.jpg","type":"slide","id":"108867","description":"

#7: Massively Multiplayer Online Games

\n

While you would think that these games would actually be something you could bond over, they can have the opposite effect if you're the only one playing them. This goes doubly for the ladies, and the men pretending to be them. Why?

\n

Well let's just say it's only a matter of time before your overprotective partner (or perhaps your partner who decided to join you online) finds out about your hot steamy affair with HamQueen69 or SuperSlayerX. That's right. We know who you are.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/b/r/o/broken-heart-9ad69.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/b/r/o/broken-heart-9ad69.png","type":"slide","id":"108859","description":"

We know them. Those games that are advertised as cooperative games or "fun multiplayer experiences for family and friends." We know better than to believe that those games will leave us on good terms with our friends, family, or significant others, and yet we play them anyway!

\n

However, there are certain games out there that can really test your romantic relationships in particular. These games may simply test you where you don't want to be tested, or will get you to question whether or not your partner is truly "the one." So whether you're here to see what everyone else is suffering through, trying to test your own partner for reasons unimaginable, or simply in a mutually sadistic relationship, here are the Top 7 Games That Can Totally Destroy Your Relationship!

"}]]]>
The least inspiring and most outrageous video game quotes https://www.gameskinny.com/jann9/the-least-inspiring-and-most-outrageous-video-game-quotes https://www.gameskinny.com/jann9/the-least-inspiring-and-most-outrageous-video-game-quotes Thu, 10 Mar 2016 11:20:07 -0500 Ty Arthur

[{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/b/a/c/backcover-4a968.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/b/a/c/backcover-4a968.jpg","type":"slide","id":"106731","description":"

That wraps up our analysis of the least inspiring quotes that video games have to offer. Let us know which one you thought was the best and which ones we missed that should have been included! For a look at the opposite side of the coin, don't forget to take a gander at our roundup of the most inspiring quotes in all of gaming.

\n

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/t/o/a/toaster-c26c3.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/t/o/a/toaster-c26c3.jpg","type":"slide","id":"106730","description":"
\n

“Soon, pitiful worms! Soon I will rule, and your lives will have their doneness setting turned to... darkest!”

\n

“Have you ever tried to indulge an all-consuming urge to kill when you don't have opposable thumbs? Or hands? Or anything other than a bread slot? You'd have a lot of pent-up anger too!

\n

-- The Toaster from Fallout: New Vegas expansion Old World Blues

\n
\n

This may be the one and only game featuring a genocidal toaster who is genuinely unhappy to learn the world was already destroyed in a nuclear Armageddon before he could get around to annihilating all life.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/k/i/n/kingofallcomsos-59979.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/k/i/n/kingofallcomsos-59979.jpg","type":"slide","id":"106728","description":"
\n

“We broke it. Yes, we were naughty. Completely naughty. So, so very sorry. But just between you and us, it felt quite good.”

\n

“We get it, its a slacker thing. What next? Video store clerk? Screenwriter? Whatever it is, we are so not paying for it. Poor, poor, Us, stuck with a L-O-S-E-R like you!”

\n

-- King Of All Cosmos, Katamari Damacy

\n
\n

The King Of All Cosmos destroys the whole universe and nobody says anything, but if The Prince makes one little mistake the string of berating comments arrives. He's really not a very good dad.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/s/e/t/setzer-3abb0.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/s/e/t/setzer-3abb0.png","type":"slide","id":"106727","description":"
\n

“How low can you get? I love it! All right, I'll help you. Nothing to lose but my life.”

\n

-- Setzer, Final Fantasy VI

\n
\n

Way to put it all in perspective Setzer. His philosophy here after being swindled and convinced to fight a world spanning empire is what I like to call "optimistic nihilism."

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/c/a/s/cass-ee8d7.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/c/a/s/cass-ee8d7.jpg","type":"slide","id":"106777","description":"
\n

Nobody's d*ck's that long. Not even Long Dick Johnson, and he had a f*cking long d*ck. Thus, the name."

\n

-- Cass, Fallout: New Vegas

\n
\n

Even surprassing "your face looks like my butt," there is some truly bizarre dialog in the Fallout series when characters try to explain concepts in ways the Courier or Vault Dweller can understand.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/f/a/l/fallfromgrace-31119.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/f/a/l/fallfromgrace-31119.jpg","type":"slide","id":"106723","description":"
\n

“I'm afraid that if you were to remove that... I would be naked.”

\n

-- Fall From Grace, Planescape: Torment

\n
\n

When's the last time a succubus gave you a gentle reminder about how clothes work? I'm sure you all heard this little voice acted gem in a totally innocent way when you were trying to give Grace's bodice to another character in need of some armor, right?

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/b/a/r/barret-85901.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/b/a/r/barret-85901.jpg","type":"slide","id":"106722","description":"
\n

“Sh*t, the hell you so calm about? You bustin' up my rhythm."

\n

-- Barret Wallace, Final Fantasy VII

\n
\n

You always had a way with words Barret, and you have the honor of being the very first video game character I ever saw use a curse word on my television screen. Congratulations!

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/k/i/n/kinzie-df902.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/k/i/n/kinzie-df902.png","type":"slide","id":"106778","description":"
\n

“Hey Kinzie, you wanna f*ck?”

\n

-- The Boss, Saints Row 4

\n
\n

Geeze, Boss, buy a girl a drink first? The Boss doesn't waste any time on romance in this iteration of the series. Guess that's what happens when the earth has been destroyed and you're becoming the new Neo messiah in the Matrix. In Boss's defense though, the line totally works, although Kinzie does punch him first.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/p/i/e/pierce-b0218.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/p/i/e/pierce-b0218.png","type":"slide","id":"106720","description":"
\n

“The last time a big naked dude said he could help me, it did not end well.”

\n

-- Pierce Washington, upon meeting naked Oleg, Saints Row The Third 

\n
\n

Pierce is a continuing source of comic relief in the series, but there's a darkness to his need to be funny. Pierce has SEEN THINGS.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/m/p/a/mpayne-030c7.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/m/p/a/mpayne-030c7.jpg","type":"slide","id":"106719","description":"
\n

“You'd find that lady luck was actually a hooker, and you were fresh out of cash.”

\n

-- Max Payne

\n
\n

Before wowing us with his quote about needing passion for life to be worth living, our tortured detective was also spinning some low grade noir analogies.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/g/l/a/glados-7a2fa.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/g/l/a/glados-7a2fa.jpg","type":"slide","id":"106718","description":"
\n

“Please note that we have added a consequence for failure. Any contact with the chamber floor will result in an 'unsatisfactory' mark on your official testing record, followed by death. Good luck!”

\n

“Well done. Here are the test results: You are a horrible person. I'm serious, that's what it says: 'A horrible person.' We weren't even testing for that. Don't let that horrible-person thing discourage you. It's just a data point. If it makes you feel any better, science has now validated your birth mother's decision to abandon you on a doorstep.”

\n

-- GLaDOS, Portal and Portal 2

\n
\n

For being an all-seeing AI with total control over your environment, GLaDOS sure is passive aggressive.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/o/r/e/oregontrail-6ff3b.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/o/r/e/oregontrail-6ff3b.jpg","type":"slide","id":"106717","description":"
\n

“You have died of dysentery” 

\n

-- The Oregon Trail

\n
\n

It doesn't get much more succinct that than, does it? What kid who grew up in the late '80s or early '90s didn't get a screen like this a couple of dozen times in computer lab?

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/s/e/r/serrano-2094f.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/s/e/r/serrano-2094f.png","type":"slide","id":"106776","description":"
\n

“Suck the tears off my d*ck, you ugly mud f*ckers!”

\n

-- General Sarrano, Bulletstorm

\n
\n

I know there's somebody out there who desperately wants this profound quote inscribed on their tombstone. This character from the ridiculous Bulletstorm is a foul-mouthed drill sergeant that would put R. Lee Ermey to shame, and this is actually one of his less offensive quotes. He always knows exactly what to say to let people really know how he's feeling.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/t/i/n/tinytina-569fb.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/t/i/n/tinytina-569fb.jpg","type":"slide","id":"106714","description":"
\n

“Real bad asses eat chocolate chip cookies. Wait a minute... those aren't chocolate chip cookies... those...are...RAISINS. Why do bad things happen to good people?”

\n

“BURN ALL THE BABIES!”

\n

“That's right. Twin sisters, man. Hhhahhhhhh. Take 'em. Take 'em take 'em take 'em take 'em”

\n

-- Tiny Tina, Borderlands 2

\n
\n

Tina Tina accomplishes the impossible – she is both more psychotic and more entertaining to listen to than Vaas from Far Cry 3. She also makes me genuinely terrified of 13 year old girls. She alternates between disturbing sexuality towards stuffed animals and an intense lust to blow up trains and bandits. There's too many good ones to pick, so just listen to all of them together below!

\n

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/w/h/a/whatawonderfuldowner-955d6.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/w/h/a/whatawonderfuldowner-955d6.png","type":"slide","id":"106716","description":"
\n

“Some trees flourish, others die. Some cattle grow strong, others are taken by wolves. Some men are born rich enough and dumb enough to enjoy their lives. Ain't nothing fair”

\n

-- John Marston, Red Dead Redemption

\n
\n

Talk about a downer! It's like all those "you are in control of your own destiny" quotes from our most-inspiring article, but taken down the bleakest path possible. Maybe John's a nihilist... or just a realist.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/f/a/c/facelookslikemybutt-84820.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/f/a/c/facelookslikemybutt-84820.jpg","type":"slide","id":"106726","description":"
\n

“You know what? Your face looks like my butt.”

\n

-- The Vault Dweller, Fallout 3

\n
\n

There are a horde of hilarious dialog options to be found in the Fallout series if you try all the different perks and varying stat builds (give either Fallout 3 or Fallout New Vegas a try with no points in intelligence and see what happens). This one, only available with the Child At Heart perk, fell a little flat.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_360,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/c/o/v/cover-6a3a5.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/fl_lossy,q_80/c_limit,f_auto,h_85,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/c/o/v/cover-6a3a5.jpg","type":"slide","id":"106713","description":"

After taking a look at some of the most inspiring and unexpectedly thought-provoking quotes across gaming, we'd be remiss if we didn't head the opposite direction. There's plenty of major downers in any given storyline to offset those uplifting moments.

\n

Should it be any surprise that there's some truly cringe-worthy text and hilariously offensive quotes to be found in the zany, outlandish world of gaming? What's interesting is that in quite a few cases, the least inspiring quotes and the most inspiring quotes actually come from the same games.

\n

After trudging through a deluge of horrifying (and OK, frequently quite amusing) lines of dialog, we've found all the best of the worst on display in the following slides. Have fun in the filth, and don't forget to fill out the poll at the end to let us know your favorite!

"}]]]>