EDF Insect Armageddon preview: Bug spray

Posted on March 08, 2011

 

It’s natural to worry about the new Earth Defense Force game, Insect Armageddon. D3 has taken the series away from developer Sandlot and handed it to a Western team, its own Vicious Cycle, best known for the Matt Hazard series. However — and this works out in the new game’s favor — the EDF games were never technically good to start with. So if Vicious Cycle designed it too well, it would feel inauthentic.

 

So far, it seems that the team has been good to the source material, making worthwhile changes and keeping what works, all in an engine that can actually keep up.

Continue reading EDF Insect Armageddon preview: Bug spray

JoystiqEDF Insect Armageddon preview: Bug spray originally appeared on Joystiq on Mon, 07 Mar 2011 06:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Saturday Crapshoot: 3D Construction Kit

Posted on March 07, 2011

Play enough games, and at some point your mind is going to start creating your own. If you can program, if you can draw, maybe you can sit down and make them happen. If not, there are tools like GameMaker and Unity and the UDK to make them happen. But what if you’d been inspired before these modern marvels came along? What if you’d had a genius idea for your own 3D world back in 1991? Then maybe, just maybe, you’d have found the 3D Construction Kit (or Virtual Reality Studio) the answer to your prayers. If so, you’d be the only one. 3D Construction Kit was where your ambitions went to die.

Very rarely has such an awesome toy been this useless. And yes, awesome is the word. 3D Construction Kit offered incredible technology by the standards of the time, not simply on the PC, but on everything from the Amiga to the ZX Spectrum. It gave you a complete polygon based 3D engine, scripting, compilation tools, and more. But don’t take my word for it. Check out this official video to see the kind of experiences you too could dare to dream of one day creating. Beware! Your mind may be blown.


 

This VHS originally came with the 3D Construction Kit, and it’s notable for being a little… how can I put this tactfully… full of shit. Yes, you could indeed create a car. You wouldn’t however be able to drive it anywhere, or have other 3D cars on the track doing anything. You’ll note how the only movement you see the car doing is courtesy of the camera sweeping past it. There is a Reason. You could, in theory, create adventure games, but since your only interaction method was shooting stuff and banging into it, there wasn’t much scope for creating puzzles. You could create a 10,000 seater stadium, ignoring the lack of actual seats and such, but you had precisely zero chance of actually playing football in it.

Really, all you could do with the 3DCK was create very simplistic scenes, a few tiny bits of them moving or wobbling around, by painstakingly shoving every last primitive into place, and adding a bit of scripting to make bits move around a bit, vanish from the gameworld, or fire deadly lasers. As soon as you wanted to go beyond that, you were either out of luck or in a world of hurt. Usually both. I know many people who owned the 3DCK. I don’t know any who managed to put together an actual game with it.

In any toolkit, the demo project sets the tone. This was 3DCK’s (albeit running in a more updated version of the engine with a far higher resolution than the original’s 320×200). If you’re wondering what the game version of Inception is going to be like, consider this a surreal little preview. I’m still not entirely sure what’s going on, but as far as I can tell, your job is to buy scuba gear from an alien so that you can find a desert island that lets you bypass a vision of Satan in order to hump the Space Shuttle.

Suddenly my own life goals seem so… ordinary.


 

Despite being barely usable (and this was on PC – the 8-bit versions had single-digit framerates) for anything serious, 3DCK was an impressive release. It was ridiculously ahead of its time, for good or bad, and the first consumer level tool that really make playing with 3D seem cool. This was a couple of years before Doom, and even commercial 3D games of the time looked pretty terrible. 3DCK also had an excellent heritage. It was based on the Freescape engine, as made famous by games like Driller, Total Eclipse and Castle Master and while those names may not mean much now, they were justifiably well-regarded at the time. Technologically, anyway. As games, they were largely terrible.

Freescape was also (in a way, via its successor, Superscape) the engine that powered a truly ghastly TV show called Cyber Zone, about which YouTube has precisely one surviving clip. It came out two years after 3DCK, starring Craig Charles as himself and James Grout as Thesp, a virtual fat man who acted a little bit snooty. Knightmare, it was not. It wasn’t even Time Busters. Or Incredible Games.

Nothing about this show worked, not for a single solitary second. Despite trying far too hard to be futuristic and cyber and other nonsense that was embarassing even in 1993, it was instantly out-dated. The world may have been fully 3D, but it ran like a dog, and the interaction was barely more advanced for being professionally designed. One team ran on pressure pads to move around, go into rooms and solve incredibly clumsy puzzles that usually boiled down to shooting ducks or similarly embarrassingly simple stuff even by Crystal Maze standards, while the other got to drive or fly around the world and… pretty much just watch them. The set was all dark and trashy. The main world used in the show was a recreation of a boring modern town. The prize was Craig Charles asking the winner what they wanted, and when they said ‘a sports car’ or whatever, handing them a disk and saying there was a virtual one on there. Words can barely describe how toe-curling this show was. Luckily, a minute or so is enough.


 

(Craig Charles went on to host the even more painful Heaven and Hell, while the BBC inflicted the astoundingly dull Fightbox on the world. At least Time Commanders was pretty entertaining though, proving that you can make a decent TV show out of a game if you try…)

3D Construction Kit wasn’t a bad product. For the £25 or so it cost, or the £7 I originally bought it for, you weren’t really paying for a game creator tool, but a kind of game creator role-playing game. You may never have made anything with it, but that wasn’t the point. You could always have made something tomorrow, or next week, or in that even more nebulous world of ’some time in the future’. For most of us, that’s really no different to the tools available now. They’re simply better, easier to use, and permit humping the space station in glorious high-definition. Thank goodness. Anything else would be rubbish.


Go to Source (PC Gamer)

New Morrowind mod and video

Posted on March 04, 2011

Below is the latest list of community submitted entries to our databases. Morrowind Mods – Vurt’s Leafy West Gash II by vurt (Models and Textures) A…

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Go to Source (Planet Elder Scrolls)

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New Community Content!

Posted on March 04, 2011

Below is the latest list of community submitted entries to our databases. Morrowind Mods – Hidden Magic Items by Redxile (Tweaks) This mod…

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Go to Source (Planet Elder Scrolls)

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Portal Playing Dad Frustrates to No End

Posted on March 03, 2011

You’ll scream at your computer while watching this non-gamer father try to play Portal.

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View Article (The Escapist – EscapistMagazine.com)

Bulletstorm Full Metal Jacket Parody Video With R. Lee Ermey And Brian Posehn

Posted on February 23, 2011

To kick of its Bulletstorm special, X-Play enlisted the help of R. Lee Ermey (you know him as the drill seargent in Full Metal Jacket) and hilarious comedian Brian Posehn (Just Shoot Me, The Sarah Silverman Program)  to enact a scene inspired by Kubrick’s flick, with a heavy dose of profanity and hardcore weaponry thrown in for good measure!

These are the totally uncensored versions of X-Play’s videos, so don’t watch ‘em with your mom…unless she’s cool like that.

Part one is below. Part two is under the cut.

Full Metal 1

 


Go to Source (G4TV.com)

New video and mods

Posted on February 22, 2011

Below is the latest list of community submitted entries to our databases. Morrowind Mods – Disarming Traps by samurai (Tweaks) In the unmodified game…

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Go to Source (Planet Elder Scrolls)

Another new video and mod

Posted on February 17, 2011

Below is the latest list of community submitted entries to our databases. Oblivion Mods – The Little Condemned’s Bag 1.0 by Light Angel (Items) …

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Go to Source (Planet Elder Scrolls)

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New Community Content!

Posted on February 16, 2011

Below is the latest list of community submitted entries to our databases. Oblivion Mods – The Little Condemned’s Bag 1.0 by Light Angel (Items) …

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Go to Source (Planet Elder Scrolls)

New video and mod

Posted on February 15, 2011

Below is the latest list of community submitted entries to our databases. Oblivion Mods – Camping by Maskar (Spells) This mod adds a camping spell to the …

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Go to Source (Planet Elder Scrolls)

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PC Gamer presents… the week in PC gaming video

Posted on February 13, 2011

Every Sunday, PC Gamer is going to bring the best in PC game video: including trailers, casts, clips, fan films and anything else we can find.

Shogun II’s CGI trailer above is a work of intro art. Funny story – each of the three lead characters in this short were provided as options for PC Gamer cover art. I love the guy with the mirror fan, but he’s not exactly going to sell the magazine at the news-stands. We eventually went with an angry Samurai. Probably for the best.

“Is that a second spire? Oooh, Catz, you suave, sexy guy.” I think of all the men in PC gaming, I love Day9 the most. There’s a bit in this Funday Monday where he can’t quite believe how well his massed Queens requirements have worked out. He may have just broken Starcraft 2’s ladder meta-game. Even if you’re not into Starcraft 2, it’s worth it just for his turn of phrase.

Epic Terran vs Zerg casted by Artosis. I’m not going to say who’s playing, because it will spoil the GSL series that Tom’s slowly working his way through. But this is a great, great match.

The first two minutes of Dragon Age 2. Hnnnhg. Rich completed it two weeks ago. Git.


You can tell that all involved had a ball of a time making Fallout Nuka Break – a Fallout 3 fan film. Although I did spend most of the piece wondering whether short shorts are appropriate attire for a post apocalyptic landscape.

Scouts may be dicks. Demomen may well be overpowered. But it turns out all you need is a medic to take the cap. Meanwhile, Lego Team Fortress 2 is precisely as cute as you think it is.

The Battlefield 3 teaser trailer inspired me to watch the original Battlefield 1942 introduction. Funny. I think every gamer will watch a rendered intro and immediately think “I can’t wait until all games look this good”. Well, now they do. But we’re already wondering when games will look as good as the intros we see today. The fidelity treadmill is a bitch.

Our office friends at Gamesradarshowed Dead Space 2 to a mom. The results were unpleasant. NSFW.

*We spent all of two minutes thinking of this title. You can probably do better. Please help. Alternatives included:
The Sunday Matinee
Unskippable cutscenes
Moving Pictures

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Go to Source (PC Gamer)

Video: Infamous 2 Karma System Completely Changes the Game

Posted on February 13, 2011

Sucker Punch demonstrates how Infamous 2‘s karma system will significantly alter the game’s experience.


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View Article (The Escapist – EscapistMagazine.com)

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Saturday Crapshoot: Microshaft Winblows 98

Posted on February 06, 2011

Richard Cobbett has… nothing to add to that. In fact, after seeing the name of this week’s bit of obscura, you should know all you need. Stick around though. The Muppets turn up near the end. Honest.

Drinking leper vomit. Being served a beloved pet in a bun. Being dragged naked behind the Orient Express on train tracks sprinkled with salt and broken glass. Drowning in a vat of live maggots.

Oh, hello there, readers. You just joined us, the PC Gamer team, in our weekly game of “Things That Are More Fun Than Microshaft Winblows 98″. We’ve been playing it for the last decade and a half, for an hour a day, and unlike this terrible excuse for a CD-ROM, we never seem to run out of material. So far, only three things have been disqualified for going too far: the movies of Seltzer and Friedberg, because at least Microshaft doesn’t risk being sued by Satan for removing his writing credit, a dentist getting the hiccups during root canal surgery, and the other parodies from creator Parroty Interactive: Star Warped, The X-Fools, and one of the few games to specifically spoof another: Pyst. Shudder.

Amazing! It’s a perfect recreation
of something that doesn’t look like Windows!

Microshaft Winblows 98 is simply content to be the funniest thing this side of spelling Microsoft with a $ in the middle. It’s not really a game, although it has a few of them in it, but more of an interactive comedy CD-ROM. The premise is that two Microsoft employees, Meg and Graham, have secretly put together this game to break into software development – Meg to stick it to the Man, Graham to gently poke fun at his idol, Billy G – and somehow you’ve found it on the network. Your challenge is to climb your way up the corporate ladder from the Tech Support department all the way to a meeting with Bill Gates himself, enduring enjoying riffs like the Microsoft slogan being “Who Does He Want To Own Today?”

CLARIFICATION: Yes, that was supposed to be funny.

Almost from the start, you can smell the desperation. Winblows feels like a game that was agreed on, everyone involved high-fived each other, sat down to work, and froze as they realised how little material they actually had to work with. In fact, I imagine it going a little something like this…

“Okay, so what’s on our hit-list? Thing #1: Bill Gates is a nerd. Everyone okay with that?”

“Definitely comedy value there, yep. And Microsoft… well, everyone knows they like money.”

“Not sure we can fill a whole disc with just corporate jokes. I know, let’s do some hilarious TV parodies!”

“Awesome! Um… how about Star Trek? Only instead of Trek, we’ll say… Tech. Star Tech!”

“Brilliant. Go write it. Don’t make it too funny though!”


“Well, you definitely didn’t make it too funny. Well done.”

“Thanks. Okay, we’ve used up our most obvious joke, and now we need nine more.”

“Oh, Christ, I don’t know. What’s that popular show with the friends?”

“Friends?”

“Yeah. Do that, only… they work at Microsoft now. Or something. We’ll be fine, just as long as we come up with a really clever, imaginative name to set up the hilarity.”


“I just felt my soul leak out of my anus.”

“You’re a comedy writer. You won’t need it.”

Most of the parodies on offer suffer not just from being about as funny as waking up in the morning to find you’ve suddenly got your mother’s herpes, which is admittedly a fairly serious flaw, but being incredibly tenuous. “Xena: Code Warrior” is a lazy idea, but you can at least vaguely see how it came together. “Mister Gates’ Neighbourhood” is a reasonable concept. But “Bill Watch” instead of Baywatch? “Touched By Bill” instead of Touched By An Angel? Stop! Parodies do not work like that!

(At the very least, they could have been “Touched By A Nerd” and “Elliot Baywatch”.)

It doesn’t help that Winblows is stuck mining geek humour almost exclusively, rendering many of the jokes that do work (I counted about three) more a case of ‘Oh, okay, yes, that was fairly clever’ rather than actually laugh-out-loud funny. Most of the time, it smacks of non-technical people desperately trying to write jokes in what may as well be a foreign language, and sounding about as convincing as your average Oxbridge politician trying to ‘get down’ with his ‘homies’ in ‘da hood’. In the intro alone, Graham tells a suddenly worried Meg “They could never fire you, my little megabyte,” to which she wittily replies “Call me that again and I’ll rip out your modem.” Good grief. Cue the tumbleweed of failure…

The basic game is that you watch everything on offer, then an e-mail arrives with a cryptic password hint that lets you into the next level, which unlocks more stuff. The different sections are CampusCam, where you watch lousy security camera footage, the MSTV Network with the above parodies, Bill’s Personal Outlook with some uninteresting diary entries, and the Reject Bin, which shows some appallingly rendered box-shots of failed Microsoft projects like the ‘Live Mouse’ and ‘Naughty Net Nanny’. They don’t even pretend to have taken the time to make them look like real products, never mind Microsoft ones.

Hey, it’s a mouse! Like a computer
mouse! Only it’s a real mouse!
Oh, Winblows. You spoil us so.

For educational purposes, here’s the exact same basic concept done much better in Space Quest IV – real parodies (although obviously dated now – the game came out in 1991), descriptions that actually build on the title gags, and art that bothers to help the humour out instead of leaving it to die alone.

By far the most painful parts of Winblows 98 though are the mini-games it throws in. Think of Windows. What are the traditional games provided with it? Minesweeper. Solitaire. Drawing willies in MS Paint. Obviously, Winblows serves up hilarious parodies of all of these to…

…wait, one second. I’m pretending to be told something I clearly already know…

…nope, none of those are in. Instead, your random parodies are a board game called The Roll Ahead, based on Gates’ book “The Road Ahead”, in which Bill Gates and Steve Jobs race by rolling a die and making you wish you could just do exactly that. There’s Pinbill, which actually isn’t much worse than the actual Microsoft pinball game, even if its only real joke is Bill having a large nose, which he doesn’t, Winblows Exploder, which may be one of the worst shooters ever, and… Win Bill Gates’ Money.

This one is just weird. It’s based on a show called Win Ben Stein’s Money (which came out in the UK as Win Beadle’s Money), but doesn’t use its format. Instead, it’s a blatant, unfunny, and above all else, incredibly cheap rip-off of the excellent quiz series You Don’t Know Jack. (I was willing to write this off as a coincidence until it actually namechecked it during one of the questions.) It’s so cack-handed, it doesn’t bother randomising the questions, just which chain of them you get. It’s so lazy, there isn’t even a custom line if you don’t bother answering – when the time expires, it just acts like you chose the wrong answer. It’s so awful, it… it really sucks! What’s more, Monty Python’s The Meaning Of Life comedy interactive kinda-game had already done a rubbish You Don’t Know Jack parody the year before.

Even if we ignore all of that though, just look at this! People were paid to make this!

Doesn’t matter when your
whole game is ‘Sans Comic’.

There’s a reason there weren’t many games like Microshaft Winblows 98, beyond the fact that we live in a world where concepts like hope and sanity exist. Even if you had the requisite lobotomy to find them hilarious, there was never much content for your money. You can see everything that Winblows has to offer in five minutes, and the rest of its videos in a couple of hours. Not even the game part slows you down, since there’s nothing more to it than working out a password, and if you don’t guess that “PAMELA ANDERSON’S CLEAVAGE” should translate as “SILICON VALLEY”, Meg and Graham only let you give two wrong answers before just telling you what to type and calling you an idiot. They also call you an idiot if you don’t move the cursor for more that 0.2 picoseconds and for a few other things… up to, but not actually including, installing and playing this worthless game. The one time it would be deserved.

But maybe it’s not Winblows 98’s fault that it can’t even get close to comedy without being slapped with a restraining order. Maybe Windows and geek jokes just aren’t funny enough to carry a CD-ROM.

Or maybe… just maybe… it’s all a question of how you tell ‘em.

Winblows’ Bill Gates sounds
like Kermit with a cold. Coincidentally,
Kermit sounds like Bill Gates without one.

Muppets Inside was released in 1995, but still makes Winblows 98 look older. The premise is that the Muppets are trapped in your computer and need your help to escape – in practice, by joining them on a tour of your own motherboard. As a game, it’s nothing to write home about – made up entirely of simple challenges that just repeat and repeat and repeat ad infinitum.

As a geeky comedy experience though, it wins out over Winblows for one big reason – it feels comfortable with its material. There’s plenty of new footage, lots of clips, but more importantly, lots and lots of genuinely funny bits and pieces, from the hyper-geeky jokes (you get around the computer by driving a ‘Data Bus’) to the completely random asides like Rizzo singing a song about Jim Henson trademark enforcement to the tune of Carmen’s Toreador song. Most importantly of all though, there’s this:

This game can now
officially do no wrong.

The limited number of games on offer quickly get a bit dull, and none of them are much fun. The style and humour carries it much further than any similar game though, with by far the most memorable bit being its intro. I won’t spoil the details, but this is how you do a geek joke, Winblows. Watch and weep:


HISTORICAL NOTES: Since Winblows’ release, Bill Gates became the biggest philanthropist of all time, the Office Assistant became the most hated thing to appear on a screen since Scrappy Doo, and Microsoft even released its own joke version of Windows: Vista. (Nobody laughed much at that one either.)

Go to Source (PC Gamer)

Fed up with your pathetic human DNA? Albert Wesker makes a convincing argument for injecting Uroboros (Resident Evil 5)

Posted on February 02, 2011

Imagine if Tricell Pharmaceutical Company made a product that transformed wimpy men into deadly killers who could survive being neck deep in a river of volcanic magma. Imagine that product being called ‘Old Uroboros’ and being endorsed by Resident Evil’s metrosexual bad guy Albert Wesker. Now imagine if the TV commercial for ‘Old Uroboros’ was like this…


Go to Source (GamesRadar)

When Chords Meet Pixels

Posted on January 22, 2011

Beck, N.E.R.D., The Red Hot Chili Peppers and more flaunt their gaming cred with these awesome game-inspired videos.

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Go to Source (GamePro)

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The best of the PC at CES 2011

Posted on January 11, 2011

The Consumer Electronics Show 2011 has just wrapped up, showing off hundreds of hot new gadgets to the world. CES always provides a great insight into the technology of the future, and that includes the chips, processors and controllers we can expect to be using with our PCs later this year. Below you’ll find an overview of five of the most interesting bits of new tech shown at this year’s convention.

1. Razer Hydra motion controls and Portal 2

Razer have created their own precision motion controller for the PC. It’s called the Hydra, and like the Ninendo Wii controller, it consists of two handheld controllers linked by a cable, the movements of which can be recognised by a device that sits on your desktop and projects a six foot wide electromagnetic field. The controller will come bundled with a special copy of Portal 2 that will contain an extra level pack specifically designed to make use of the Hydra’s abilities. The controller allows the player to pick up, stretch and distort special blocks to solve the game’s puzzles. Here’s Progaming’s video showing one of the new Portal 2 levels being demoed with the Hydra.


2. Intel’s Sandy Bridge processor

It wasn’t just the Razer Hydra that featured Valve’s input at this year’s CES. Valve CEO Gabe Newell gave a presentation singing the praises of Intel’s new ‘Sandy Bridge’ processor. It’s a CPU with built in graphics card capabilities. At the moment it’s not powerful enough to make graphics cards redundant, but it’s an interesting glimpse of a possible future in which integrated graphics technology outshines separate GFX components. Newell says that Portal 2 has been specifically optimised to work with the Sandy Bridge technology.

3. PrimeSense Wavi Xtion motion sensor camera

PrimeSense are the company responsible for much of the depth sensing technology in Microsoft’s motion sensing Kinect peripheral for the Xbox 360. They’ve teamed up with ASUS to create the Wavi Xtion motion sensing camera, which has been designed for use with the PC. The device is due to be released in February along with the Xtion Pro Developer Kit, which should give Kinect hackers a more powerful alternative to the Microsoft camera. The twist to the Wavi Xtion is that it comes with a pair of boxes that wirelessly stream data between your PC and your TV, letting you play games on your TV powered by the hardware in your desktop computer.

4. Razer Switchblade

One of the best gadgets to be unveiled at CES 2011 was the prototype for Razer’s Switchblade notebook. It features a multi-touch screen and an adaptive keyboard that changes depending on the game or application you’re running. The Intel Atom processor within is powerful enough to run games, but flexible enough for multimedia activities like watching films or browsing the web. Check out the video below for an overview, or the official Razer site for more information.


5. Nvidia 3D monitor

Nvidia announced a new 3D PC monitor, the Lenovo L2363d. The 23 inch screen can display 3D images at 1920 x 1080 resolution and even comes with a built in, dual lens 3D camera that can capture 3D stills and film, and even allows for 3D video chat. Unfortunately, you’ll still need the special glasses to enjoy the 3D effect, and price details are yet to be announced.

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Go to Source (PC Gamer)

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Crybusters – Crystal End Released

Posted on December 31, 2010

The third mission for the Crysis Wars mod Crybusters called Crystal End has finally released!

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Go to Source (ModDB.com)

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Crybusters Mission III Trailer

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Crybusters Mission II Trailer

The 10 Best Holiday Gaming Moments

Posted on December 24, 2010

Video games don’t have Christmas Specials like TV does, but these game moments capture the same holiday spirit.

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Go to Source (GamePro)

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Please go to the GamePro.com site to view video descriptions (Click HERE or follow the usual “Go to Source” link). Merry Christmas!!

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Looking Back at 2010: The Year in Shooters

Posted on December 21, 2010

Looking Back at 2010: The Year in Shooters

2010 offered us a lot of video games, and for those of you who enjoy pretending that your controller is a gun, it involved a lot of shooters as well. Some were good, some were bad, but can you remember all of them? Stretching your memory all the way back to January 2010 can be tough when we’re on the precipice of the holiday, but lets’ take a look, shall we?

JANUARY

Army of Two: The 40th Day

The year was still brand-new when the second Army of Two got dumped in our laps. It expanded upon the original, giving us more co-op moments, destructible environments, and the ability to mock surrender while your partner popped them in the head with the bullet. While not a huge success, it was one of the more robust co-op experience in that vast wasteland of early January. However, most people were probably playing Darksiders instead of this one. Great idea that just hasn’t delivered yet.

Read on for the Rest of the Year in Shooters!

MAG

MAG promised us massively multiplayer gunplay action, and it actually delivered. Up to 256 players online at the same time duking it out as one of three different factions led to a lot of fun moments, although there were some glitches along the way. Still, manning a turret and defending your base from hordes of real-life foes is highly addicting and was well worth it. Issuing orders to your squad and leveling up through the ranks gave this a lot of replayability.

FEBRUARY

SOCOM: U.S. Navy Seals Fireteam Bravo 3

Who said shooter experiences are just limited to consoles? SOCOM on the PSP delivers a squad-based shooter experience in the palm of your hand, and it does it with over 70 different weapons. Seriously, that’s a lot even for a console title. Online co-op lets you experience the action with a friend, and you can level up and earn ribbons to decorate your uniform with. If you’re stuck in a car on the way to grandma’s house for three hours, this is what you want in your pocket.

Borderlands – The Secret Armory of General Knoxx

Yes, Borderlands came out in 2009, but the best piece of DLC (possibly ever?) came out for the game in early 2010, giving you even more RPG Shooter-ness to enjoy. Brand-new weapons, never-before-seen enemies, more Scooter, and tons of new missions make this piece of content a very easy buy, and we haven’t even mentioned Crawmerax. What’s that? Oh, you’ll find out. Oh boy, will you find out. Just keep a spare pair of pants handy.

MARCH

Metro 2033

Metro 2033 came out of left field and surprised everyone when it managed to combine the shooter genre with the best elements of action adventure. Plus, the game introduced a bullet economy where ammunition was more valuable than cash. Requiring air filters for gas masks, supplying you with horror elements, and even making you illuminate your map with a Zippo lighter all gave this game a unique edge that is still a lot of fun to experience.

Red Steel 2

Even the Wii got some much-needed shooter love in 2010, and it all started with Red Steel 2. Which actually means it started back in 2006, because it was a launch title for the Wii. However, this game is superior in every way to the original Red Steel, and it adds MotionPlus support, so you can more accurately pop a cap in, or disembowel, someone. Great combat and much-improved visuals make this sequel well the time.

Just Cause 2

While this game might not fit squarely into the shooter genre, I’m calling it the lone entry in the “Sandbox Shooter With a Grappling Hook” genre, because it gives you the toys you need to play with (namely lots of guns, and an awesome grappling hook) and sets you loose. You can completely ignore the storyline if you want, and just go around tethering things to one another. Or shooting people. It’s really up to you, and more people should check this game out. There is something truly addictive about it.

APRIL

Splinter Cell: Conviction

It’s almost criminal to include this title, as Splinter Cell has traditionally been about sneaking and stealthing, but Sam Fisher’s new ability to “Mark and Execute” make spying on enemies that you’re about to kill all the more exciting. Granted, the game is extremely light when compared to Chaos Theory, but Fisher needed a shakeup. While the team stopped shy of turning him into Jason Bourne outright, they got very close in delivering us a fast, powerful Sam Fisher. Plus that whole “spraying the name of the objective” on the environment thing was very cool.

Dead To Rights: Retribution

I’ll be honest. This game was a real limburger cheese-fest. By which I mean, it stank. However, you know what didn’t stink? Shadow. Having a dog sidekick that can literally rip the balls off of bad guys is awesome. Sure, you have to trade the good with the bad, and was DTR: R’s bad gameplay worth it? Definitely, when you saw the “Scrotality” achievement.

MAY

Lost Planet 2

Again, not a typical shooter, per se, but one that gave you the ability to hop onto giant mechs armed with pods that could house your teammates and wield things like giant shotguns. Yes, there were some control problems, and trying to carry giant eggs in multiplayer is enough to make you tear your hair out, but that low-gravity combat and those Vital Suits made it enjoyable. If only this had been a Winter release, I would have felt the need to search for heat sources a bit more compelling.

JUNE

Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker

While I enjoyed Portable Ops as much as the next PSP owner, I really didn’t think it was going to be possible to put out an MGS game that managed to tie together the original games with a new storyline, but they did it. Peace Walker represents a true MSG-centric experience on the PSP, and the fact that they made it co-op is all the better. Even though you all play as Snake on your own screen, it’s nice having the ability to bring buddies into the battle. Once you step onto the beach in that opening scene training mission, you’ll be hooked.

Singularity

While not the first game to allow you to manipulate time while you fire weapons at baddies, Singularity had the added ability of letting you de-age things (i.e. crumbling a wall), or re-aging something (restoring a crate to its full glory so you can smash it open and get the goods inside). Yes, we all know that the game wasn’t exactly a success when it hit shelves. but the innovative time-manipulation was definitely something that I’d like to see in a game at some point. There’s so much that could be done with time-travel, so I’m hoping that Valve picks up the chrono-gauntlet after Portal 2.

JULY

Crackdown 2

While Crackdown 2 didn’t really shake things up too much in terms of a sequel, it added a lot of new toys to play with. Granted, searching for orbs gets to be a pain in the ass after your first 100, those magnetic grenades turn everything in the world into something fun to play with. Launch cars up onto buildings has never been so enjoyable. Once you finally find aerial vehicles, you’re so far into the game that you can practically leap everywhere you need to go. But, that doesn’t mean that the flying isn’t a total blast, because it is.

AUGUST

Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days

If you want gritty realism in your video games, then you need to check out Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days, as it was inspired by user created content from surveillance cameras and the like. Grainy, jump-cutty, and visceral, this game doesn’t want you to think it’s light and fluffy at all. Gameplay mechanics are basic, but going online to co-op as both Kane & Lynch (you only play as Lynch if you’re going at it single player) offers up the best experience. It’s a bloody mess, and very fun at times.

SEPTEMBER

Halo: Reach

Okay, if I really need to remind you about the Halo: Reach release date, then you need to try chewing on a plasma grenade. Halo: Reach gave us a team to fight alongside, and sweet powerups that give you a slight edge at times, or let you do insanely stupid times at others. Like flying off the edge of the map to your death. Not that I’ve done that several times or anything.

Quantum Theory

Quantum Theory, I really don’t want to be the boot that kicks you in the ribs while you’re down, but holy cow you sucked. Your premise sounded amazing. I mean, fighting your way through a living tower? Getting to toss your partner as a projectile? These are all good things. Sadly, it just didn’t come together. Maybe next time.

OCTOBER

Medal of Honor

While I didn’t enjoy Medal of Honor as much as I thought I would, there were some awesome gameplay elements that this brought to the table. Silently traversing a map with your buddy instead of going in guns blazing? That creates a lot of tension, and is surprisingly enjoyable. But my favorite level had you a great distance from the bad guys, popping them one by one with an extremely long-range sniper rifle. That was enjoyable enough to make me wish they’d just make Sniper: The Snipening game already. Bring back Silent Scope!

Vanquish

Yes, it was short, had dorky dialogue, and a wafer-thin plot. But, it was a science fiction shooter that delivered hardcore or the clanking and robot-ing where Halo: Reach only offered you strange-colored aliens. Plus, since when has knee-gliding been such a core component of a game? Read: never. Especially since knee-gliding isn’t offered up in Guitar Hero or Rock Band. Vanquish offers a solid game experience that got overshadowed by Halo: Reach, and deserves some of your hard-earned attention.

NOVEMBER

GoldenEye 007

When this game was first announced, I thought it would be a craptastic port. Instead, you got a beautiful game with some very fun gameplay and a very fun experience on the Wii. I only play it with a classic controller, but I have friends who swear by the Zapper. Whichever flavor you choose, GoldenEye offers up a really impressive James Bond experience on Nintendo’s baby, and it does it with style. The multiplayer doesn’t have quite the addictive feel of the original, but it is a lot of fun as well. Especially in that tacky disco level.

Call of Duty: Black Ops

Best to end the year with a bang, right? Call of Duty: Black Ops certainly came in with a bang, and it shows no signs of going out anytime soon either. We imagine this will be a popular gift this holiday season, and with the just-announced DLC, you’re going to be killstreaking and fragging your way to multiplayer bliss in no time. Plus, the game has one of the most interesting and exciting single-player campaigns to come with a shooter pretty much ever. Toss in the hilarious historical zombies, and this is a game that you’ll have no problem loving.

So we probably didn’t hit everything on this list, so what were some of your favorite Shooter from 2010? I’m split between Halo: Reach and Call of Duty: Black Ops. Thankfully this isn’t the Gift of the Magi, where I have to give up both games in order to make someone else happy.

Have something to share? Have an idea for a feature you’d like to see on G4? E-mail me. You can also follow me on Twitter.

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Tron

Posted on December 19, 2010

Tron: Legacy Official Trailer

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Tron (1982) Trailer


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