25 Dec, 2007
The Christmas gaming charts are a special thing. Not only are they a celebration of the festive season's out-of-control consumerism, but they also show us which of the titles released during the intense pre-Chrimbo gaming avalanche have most successfully grabbed the attention of the masses.
After all, it's the one time of the year when financial frivolity is king, when partners, friends and gene-pool sharing associates rush out to purchase the software-based gift that their
Dec 14, 2007
95% of videogame characters are little more than background noise. They talk, blink, maybe wave their arms around a bit while yelling at you about 'keys', 'objectives' and 'friendly fire'. But sometimes you run into characters that stand out like explosions in the night sky against the cardboard cut-outs that inhabit the majority of games. These are the characters you actually care about.
Now we're not likely to confess our feelings for a polygonal personality to random people on
Designing a box for a game is tough. With one image, you need to stand out on the shelf, catch the eye of the casual consumer and convince them that your game is worth their money. Some games get it wrong; others get it so wrong that potential customers actually recoil in horror. We've all seen terrible old atrocities like Mega Man and Alex Kidd in Miracle World, but don't think for a second that awful cover art is a thing of the past, left behind by a more sophisticated games industry. To
6 Dec, 2007
We heart games. You heart games. But sometimes a dangerous line is crossed and our passionate hobby becomes an outright obsessive occupation. And that's when things can get ugly and/or unhealthy. That's when you need to take a step back and explore that wonderful world outside your window. Go shopping, kick a ball around or, hell, even talk to friends without using a headset. But how do you know when games are taking over your life?
A few sure-fire indications would be, say,
5th Dec, 2007
You might have read last weeks story on how Texan police have used the promise of free Xbox 360s to lure fugitive crimials out of hiding. While its a downright hilarious example to round off the year with, 2007 has been crammed like an over-crowded prison with tales of videogame-related crime.
Of course, were not talking about games themselves inciting violent outbursts in those who play them (Calm down Jack!). No, rather this year has seen a staggering amount of crime stories
30 Nov, 2007
Most gamers recognise that movie tie-ins are generally an exercise in soul-crushing disappointment. But, optimistic fools that we are, since when has that recurring fact ever stopped gamers getting feverishly excited about reliving big-screen action for small-screen kicks? Never.
For the benefit of everyone that lives in hope of a blockbuster game based on a blockbuster movie, we've cast our eye over some of Hollywood's hottest properties for 2008 to see if there's anything that
26 Nov, 2007
We've previously filled your head sponge with 101 things you didn't know about games, well now we continue our virtual factual feastery by proudly presenting this rather fascinating list of gaming firsts. The first console, the first video game, the first four-player, the first boss, the first co-op, the first sequel, the first online game, the first jump, the first black protagonist, the first character described as "homosexual", the first female game designer, the first game
Nov 20, 2007
Blizzard, Bizarre, Rockstar, Creative Assembly... These are some of gaming's biggest names in development, with some of the world's best games under their belts. But who owns these brainiac studios? And, more importantly, which publisher has the best collection of in-house devs? We thought we'd find out.
We've taken stock of the more notable studios (that is, those devs not condemned to creating endless mobile phone games) and the big-name publishers who pay their wages, issue
16 Nov, 2007
Sometimes we like adverts. As long as they're clever. Or arty. Or have got monkeys in. Or ladies that look like they want to touch us in the pants. They're all pretty good. The other kind of advert that we like are old ones. Even if they're completely rubbish - and mostly they are - they still hold a certain irresistible, nostalgic charm. And we're sure 'veteran' gamers will feel inclined to agree as they browse the next few pages, where we've generously gathered a veritable
Nov 13, 2007
Mini-games are everywhere. Videogames have gotten so big that we no longer bat an eyelid if they contain one or many bite-sized distractions that, twenty years ago, we probably wouldve been paying full price for. Hell, thanks mostly to Nintendos DS and Wii, its no longer a shock to see games made up from nothing but dozens of sub-games.
Some mini-games are amazing. Some are generic trash. Some pay heart-patting homage to yesteryear. Some are daft, ill-advised experiments that some