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Industry Talk: How To Revive Previous-Generation Gaming

The following is derived from the TheGameFanatics.com article of the same name. Such article was written by me and published at the following URL: http://thegamefanatics.com/2012/08/27/industry-talk-revive-previous-generation-gaming/.

In this article, I argued that gaming from the previous generation brought us a unique combination of intimacy and the early stages of social integration. Along with that came several qualities/genres/approaches to gaming that we’ve missed out with the current console generation of PS3, Xbox 360, and Wii. Here are some of standout examples that we’re missing in gaming today. Read more…

Five Gamescom Absentees We Need to See at PAX Prime

At last week’s Gamescom, we got a look at some of 2012 and 2013′s most promising titles and were treated to announcements from Sony, Blizzard, Activision, and more. Despite that, there are plenty of highly anticipated games that we haven’t heard much about since E3…or ever. Below are the 5 platform-specific games that we need to see at this year’s PAX Prime. Please understand the list below reflects currently available platforms. Read more…

Why I Don’t Pay for DLC

The following is derived from my IGN profile and was posted Friday, August 12, 2011 here.

As consoles give birth to new consoles, we get new technology, evolutions of games, and more beloved sequels that transcend the arcade days. We grow attached to these franchises, or “universes,”  and we see characters and development teams as more than just names but important entities in our virtual lives. Game developers have learned how to exploit this interest and build up the franchises even more and more through the release of downloadable content (DLC). It keeps us interested in that game — that universe — for a set amount of time.

But there are so many problems I have with this aside from the fact that, if I download more maps, more missions and what used to be Easter Eggs, I’m paying $30-60 more for something that should either already be included, included for free, or not exist at all. Here are my chief reasons for not buying DLC: Read more…

Watch Dogs: While the other Dogs are Sleeping…

As many of you know, today marks the release of Sleeping Dogs, an open world GTA/Saint’s Row-like game and, as we’ve seen already, this title is scoring well with reviewers. That said, it is another “Dogs” title I’d like to turn our attention to: Watch Dogs from Ubisoft Montreal, the team that brought you Assassin’s Creed, Far Cry, Prince of Persia, Splinter Cell, and Rainbow 6. A near-future action/stealth/espionage adventure, Watch Dogs has given us hope in the slow decline of this console’s generation, but we haven’t heard a thing about it since its surprising splash at E3. So why call attention to a game we have no new information about? I share my impressions of Watch Dogs because, two months later, this game still blows anything we’ve seen — or will see this year — completely out of the water. Read more…

PCs: Where gaming is most relevant!

I’m willing to bet 90% percent of this audience operates and plays at least two of the following: current-gen console games, traditional handheld games (Nintendo or Sony), and mobile games (iOS or Android). For how quickly the gaming industry changes, consumers, who undoubtedly play a huge role in the industry’s advancements, do a stand-up job of exploring what each platform or console has to offer. Hell, even the Dreamcast crowd has a reason to move on.

Apart from consumer-driven activity that spans from gaming expos to forums, advancements in hardware may have the second largest impact on gaming and, in the case of PC hardware, it is the user base that can find a beautiful medium between hardware and gaming. How does a user find that medium? Putting together a PC, of course! Read more…

My First Playtest!

If you’ve been to a trade show like PAX or gamescom, chances are you’ve gotten to try out an unreleased game. If you’ve participated in an open beta, you’ve probably had some fun with a game months before it was released.

But how many of you out there have done a private testing for a developer behind closed doors? Want to know what that’s like? Well then, let’s have a look at what I did recently at Electronic Arts! Read more…

Celebrating Halo

It has been five years since we last saw Master Chief in action. It has been eleven years since the first Halo game.

Eleven years ago? When I was…nine inches shorter and experiencing Furby withdrawals?

Nearly two console generations ago, a small studio named Bungie put out what is to this day a gold standard for a launch title — a game that, by itself, could sell millions of consoles. A new franchise, a new approach to a genre, and a new universe to rally around enticed Microsoft‘s new frontier consumers to purchase Halo: Combat Evolved.

And on the heels of Master Chief’s revival (quite literally!), 343 StudiosHalo 4, I find few other activities more valuable than remembering what makes Halo one of the greatest video game franchises of all time. In the coming months, I will go back in time and complete the campaigns of Halo 1-3 and Reach (maybe ODST); I’ll recount what Halo brought to gaming, how aspects of Halo still hold up today, and what makes Halo a franchise worth continuing.

What better way to announce this trip down memory lane with Master Chief’s first action on the Pillar of Autumn… Read more…

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