Thursday, October 15, 2015

Weekly Link Round-Up

It's time for the Weekly Link Round-Up, where we share the best, the worse, and silliest gaming news on the web. This week brings us some thoughtful pieces about race in video games, retro comebacks, and Top 10 Lists that will cause some head scratching.

- Smaller news stations are fun to poke at; whether it's for their terrible reporting or bad spelling. Consuls? Seriously? I didn't know video games had government sanction to live in foreign countries to promote the citizens interest. The story itself from News 22 in Massachusetts is nothing to pay attention to. Old video games are "new" again. Your Atari may be worth hundreds of dollars! We all know that's not true, but news stations keep trying to pull this trick every few months.

- Kotaku dives in to the issues with portraying "black" in video games, calling up an excerpt from an upcoming book 'The State of Play' to release later this month. I saw the cover and Ian Bogost wrote an essay for it. Not buying it...for now. My brain is thesaurus-ed out from work. There are only so many ways to use the word "color" before it loses it's meaning. Personal academic preferences aside, this is a really interesting piece focused on hair. Yeah. Hair. In video games. Black hair to be exact. The styles we're use to seeing on television is a hair texture that is not accurate to the everyday person with said hair type. It's the same for pretty much every culture. I can honestly say my hair is no where near the quality or type to live up to Hollywood expectations. But that's the problem, isn't it? People expect us to have that hair type, so we shove ourselves into salons, buy expensive shampoos and styling kits, to get that hair. And video games are not helping.

I know it sounds weird, but this really is a good article to read. Worth a book purchase...just not yet. Bogost I really can't handle a thesaurus outside of work right now.

- The Guardian lists the 30 Worst Video Games of All Time! At least according to their writers. They did throw in a Shamalama joke so maybe this list isn't all bad? And reading through it, The Guardian may have a legit list. This is only the first half, with the second being posted tomorrow. The games range from 50 Cent: Bulletproof, to Hotel Mario, and BMX XXX. All games that are terrible and make you wonder why money was wasted on such frivolous endeavors. Probably to make a quick buck.

- Not to be outdone, Paste Magazine has a list of the 7 Strangest Gizmos in Sci-Fi Video Games. No surprise that Fallout and Portal make an appearance. I don't quite get the choice for Saints Row. The teddy bear gun in Fallout is much stranger then a weapon that sends out bad sound waves.

- Video game Crossfire, which is one of the largest MMO's in the world (even outpacing League of Legends and WoW), is teaming up with Original Films to make a movie adaptation of the game. Original Films is responsible for the Fast and the Furious series. This is the first Korean game to be licensed by Hollywood. There are no details about story, cast, or a release date, but to have such a big title in the hands of Hollywood could either help or hurt the video game to movie adaptations. Well at this point anything would help.

- Back to WhatCulture and the 15 Scariest Games of the Decade (so far). So we know this isn't going to be a steller list, and some random games will get thrown in. How is DanganRonpa "scary"? Do the Japanese antics make it something to fear? But what I do want to point out is that scary games are making a comeback. With the rise of Steam and independent games such as Slenderman and the 5 Nights at Freddy's series, horror games are carving a niche once again, and we're starting to see some quality work that we don't typically receive from Triple A titles. The fact that we can have a list of 15 horror games from the past 5 years is remarkable. And there are plenty more that were not listed! There is hope that horror is coming back into style, and I'm looking forward to it.

- Speaking of horror games, a Friday the 13th game is currently looking for crowdfunding help. The premise is very much like Slenderman active mode, where one person takes the role of Jason while the other players are camp counselors. Your goal as Jason is to kill all of the other players. If you're a counselor, you have to live through the night. The game is as cheesy as the classic movie, with characters ranging from "The Girl Next Door" to "The Jock." But that's what we enjoy about Jason. The developers are looking for $700k and half of the project has been funded so far. I don't know if it's something I'm willing to back, given the recent uproar over developers not providing games after funding, but if it does make it, I'd be willing to buy it on Steam.

- And finally, if the Mad Max video game left something to be desired, how about the 8-Bit Fury Road? It's a side-scrolling where you run away from the War Boys, drive cars, blow up stuff, and drive back to blow up more stuff. In 8-Bit form. It's the game Mad Max could have been, and way more fun.

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