Thursday, December 29, 2005


Christmas Gaming Goodness

I scored some great new gaming goods for Christmas. Here's a list of my loot:

Nintendo DS Mario Kart Bundle - very cool, have been playing the crap out of it already. It also plays GBA games great and have been playing Golden Sun, a nice RPG for GBA.

Ninja Gaiden Black (Xbox)
Burnout 3: Takedown (Xbox)
Prince of Persia: Warrior Within (PS2)
Dragon Quest VIII (PS2) - can't wait to start this as soon as I finish my review games
Shining Force Neo (PS2)

What gaming swag did you haul in this year?

Oh and also, I'm stuck in Golden Sun. Does anyone know how to find the thieves' stash in the inn in Vault? I used Mind Read on the gang and found out they stole the rod, and that it's hidden in the Inn but I can't seem to find it.

Friday, December 23, 2005


Video Game Myths Debunked

Henry Jenkins, MIT professor, has written an excellent, well documented, and not too terribly long essay on eight different myths about video games and why they are myth, not fact. The myths that he debunks are:
All false.

Go read the article now! What do you think?

Thursday, December 22, 2005


Free Adventure Games Online

Quandary, the adventure game web site, has posted up a really cool guide for a bunch of different play-via-web free adventure games. Check it out here.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005


Advergaming - Ads in Games

Joystiq has just posted a bit of news from Ars Technica about THQ and their goal of getting advertisements into the games we play. Here is a quote from Joystiq's article which I want to comment on. Be sure and click the links to get the full story.

From Joystiq:

In an article over at Ars Technica it has been revealed that THQ is strongly in support of in-game advertisement. The company has announced a deal with Massive Inc. that will eventually result in dynamically updated in-game ads for players connected to the internet.

From the THQ Press Release:
The Massive Network is the first and only network of its kind to deliver dynamic advertising seamlessly to an aggregated audience across premiere video games titles. The Massive Network enables publishers and developers to capture incremental revenues through the aggregation of the video game audience. Developers are able to integrate real-world ad campaigns that are timely, and enhance the game environment with more realism. Twenty-nine premier game publishers have committed more than 100 titles to the Massive Network.

So 29 publishers are committing 100 games to use in-game advertisement. That's pretty serious. And that's just one ad network, there could be a lot more deals being made with other networks or just between game companies and advertising companies directly.

From Joystiq (read all the links for further details about this subject):
In summary: in-game ads are excellent for deepening publishers wallets, but distracting and ultimately annoying for gamers. Unfortunately for gamers, the endless march towards ads in games seems depressingly inevitable.

How will gamers react to this? Swat 4 added games in as a patch. That seemed particularly despicable, since the original purchasers of the game didn't know they were buying an ad-infected game at the time of purchase. Also I believe that the online RPG Anarchy Online has had in-game ads for quite a while for the free version.

My personal feelings are that I will not knowingly pay full price for a game that includes advertisements. If games start coming with ads, I'll probably stop buying those games. I do not want my games to become like television, where you have to suffer through advertisements that completely break your immersion of the story and game world. In TV ads are so intrusive that most people get up and do something else while the ads play. Will gamers end up having to do this for games?

Advertisements are infecting our society on every possible front it seems, making it impossible to do anything in this world without being assaulted by blinking, flashing, screaming advertisements all day long. I don't want my entertainment infected by this any more than it already is. And we know that advertisers will start off subtle but become more and more blatant as gamers become more and more accepting to ads in games. This is why we need to stop and say NO right now, before it gets to that point.

Would you pay full price for a game that has ads in it? Would you buy a game with ads if it were signifcantly discounted? Would you play a free game that had lots of ads? What are your feelings about this? Let me know in comments.

Sunday, December 18, 2005


Classic Doom for Doom 3

A new mod has been released for Doom 3 which recreates the classic original Doom shareware levels. It even has a very cool intro movie that gives the background story for Doom. If you have Doom 3 you need to download this really wicked mod, it rocks. Here's hoping they release the rest of Doom and especially Doom 2 like this!

Friday, December 09, 2005


Neverwinter Nights Diamond

Neverwinter Nights Diamond is out for $26.99 (been out for a while actually) and I consider this to be one of the better buys this Christmas season if you've never played it or even if you're just looking to score an extra copy to play with friends and loved ones over your LAN. Neverwinter Nights is a computer RPG, set in the Dungeons & Dragons 3rd edition rules Forgotten Realms setting. But it's a lot more than that, because it's also a great RPG construction set, and a wonderful online multiplayer RPG as well.

Diamond is a DVD version, and it includes Neverwinter Nights original campaign, Shadows of Undrentide, Hordes of the Underdark, and the Neverwinter Nights Kingmaker expansion, which includes Kingmaker, ShadowGuard, and Witch's Wake Remastered. That is a LOT of gaming hours just right there. And you can find literally thousands of user-created modules on the NWN Vault, and they are rated and reviewed so you don't have to blindly search either. You could play this game for years and not have to repeat any content.

Thursday, December 01, 2005


Recent Reviews

Two new reviews of mine, up on GameChronicles.

The first one is for the PC first/third person shooter GUN, a wild west hootenanny, yeeeeehaw! I gave it a 9.0. Check the full scoop in my review. This game totally rocks, if you are a western fan at all definitely check it out.

The other review is for the Xbox version of The Sims 2. I didn't like it much, but I think it is just not my kind of game. Gave it 6.8. Here's what I had to say about it. One thing is it does look pretty nice on my new HD TV in 720p.

Not much else to say, here's my Now Playing list:

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