Monday, October 22, 2012

Here’s What the Multiplayer Looks Like (So Far) in the Next Game from the Creators of Minecraft

"Forget about fantasy and those armless creepers. Mojang's next game is going sci-fi. We've already seen one glimpse at an early build of 0x10c, but that one didn't have sound. The newest video uploaded by Mojang CEO Markus "Notch" Persson lets you hear the blasters and computer interfaces, as well as offering a glimpse at what first-person action looks like in the game world. It's early, yes, but it sure makes 0x10c look really unique." -Kotaku

Sunday, October 21, 2012

BioShock Infinite’s New Trailer Brings You the Beast America has to Offer

"Here is "The Beast of America," the latest trailer BioShock Infinite has to offer, going live moments ago via Facebook. Supposedly stitched together according to fan preference (I voted to see Songbird, Zeppelins and Handyman in the trailer's Facebook promotion) it's 100 percent in-game footage. The opening looks somewhat familiar, if only momentarily. Handyman features prominently throughout, with a brief visual mention of Elizabeth helping you in combat. And you may fly the menacing skies on the skyline once more. So I got one out of three right. Soak it up and argue what it all means. BioShock Infinite arrives on Feb. 26." -Kotaku

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Raising Money for the Invisible Children

If you're reading this, you're probably here from my Facebook posts. I signed up for Google Adsense and any money that is raised through this blog goes to me; however, for this month, I am going to donate my entire income from this to the Invisible Children group. Let's take down Kony!

"How it started
In the spring of 2003, three young filmmakers traveled to Africa in search of a story. What started out as a filmmaking adventure became much more when Jason, Laren, and Bobby stumbled upon Africa’s longest-running war--a conflict where children were both the weapons and the victims.

They produced the documentary Invisible Children: Rough Cut in 2005. At first they just showed it to their friends and family, but it wasn’t long before millions of people had seen the documentary and knew about the “invisible children.”

In 2006, Invisible Children, Inc., became an official 501(c)3 non-profit.

Who we are
We are storytellers. We are visionaries, humanitarians, artists, and entrepreneurs. We are a generation eager for change and willing to pursue it.

With a U.S. headquarters in San Diego, CA, our programs rely on talented staff, hundreds of committed volunteers, and thousands of young activists who want to use their voices for peace.

We also have offices in Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. These offices in Gulu and Dungu are primarily managed and operated by staff from LRA-affected communities.

How we make a difference
Half our work happens on the ground in Central Africa, and the other half happens in the United States.

In Central Africa, all of our programming is a partnership between Invisible Children and LRA-affected communities. We focus on long-term goals that enable children to take responsibility for their futures and the futures of their countries. Our programs are carefully developed initiatives that address the need for quality education, mentorships, the redevelopment of schools, and financial stability. In areas where the LRA is still active, we focus on civilian protection and rehabilitation.

Our work in the United States focuses on advocacy and inspiring America’s youth to “do more than just watch.” We believe that by uniting our voices we can use the systems, influence, and resources of the United States to expedite an end to the conflict."


Saturday, November 26, 2011

"If Hollywood Won’t Make a BioShock Movie…"

"The BioShock movie isn't happening. Blame the special effects, blame the water, blame Hollywood. Whatever. It's Dead.

That doesn't mean there aren't bands of eager filmmakers roaming the internet, making fan films and trailers, like the one right up there. Because there are.

And what they lack in special effects and money, they make up in gumption."

Monday, November 21, 2011

Asus Crosshair IV Formula 890FX Motherboard Review

"One could argue that going out and building a PC using a Phenom II CPU would be a bad idea today. As we saw in our Sandy Bridge Review, Intel pretty easily handles anything AMD can throw at them right now, with as good or better prices. That being said, there will always be people who prefer one company’s products over another. Until AMD responds with their upcoming Bulldozer platform, Athlon II and Phenom II are the best out there from that team.

That’s why we are going to review the Asus Crosshair IV Formula motherboard, which is based on the prematurely dated top-of-the-line AMD 890FX/SB850 chipset. Even if a similarly priced Intel setup performs better (and it will, as you’ll find in the review), we know a lot of you wouldn’t dream of “switching teams”. As you’ll see, the Crosshair IV Formula adds plenty of extra features and gadgets, and is therefore considered a high end motherboard. And that is certainly reflected in the price as it’s selling in the $220 price range, which remarkably makes it more expensive than the fastest AMD desktop processor you can put in it. I guess the idea is that it will take your CPU to greater heights than say, a $130 motherboard using a similar chipset. We’ll find out if this is the case by the end of this review."

"It used to be that motherboards would vary a bit from one another in terms of performance. In those days, there were often several chipsets to choose from, from various manufacturers. In this site’s decade of existence, we have reviewed motherboards with chipsets from AMD, Intel, ATI, Nvidia, Via, and SiS. As you can guess, a board from SiS didn’t quite keep up with one from Intel or Via a lot of the time. Those days aren’t completely gone yet; the rest are still kicking around, serving various niches. But as far as mainstream or high end desktop systems go, you will probably want to stick with an AMD chipset for your AMD CPU, and an Intel chipset for your Intel CPU. This, and the fact that more and more components which once resided on the chipset have moved over to the CPU itself, means that the difference in performance between two motherboards based on the same chipset will be negligible.

Therefore, we have pared down our motherboard review methodology a bit. We will take a brief look at overall performance, just to make sure there is nothing horribly wrong with the motherboard or its drivers. But we will focus more on the actual features of the board – what makes it special? Physical layout is a very important factor on a motherboard, as is overclocking performance on a product like this. Also, boards like the Crosshair IV Formula offer a lot of extra software, and even some hardware features on the board itself. We will also dig deep into onboard peripheral performance. This means things like USB 3.0, SATA speed, and audio features will be investigated thoroughly. This will give us a better idea on why a $220 motherboard might be worth considering over a $130 board for some. If we were to simply throw some benchmarks at it, take some pictures, and paste information from the product page, we would be doing our readers a disservice. On the next page, we’ll look at the board itself, and go from there. As you can imagine, there is a lot to talk about with the Crosshair Formula IV."

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

American Icons Gallery Show Recognizes Classic Gaming Consoles For the Works of Art They Are

We live in an age of gaming gorgeousness. Gamers' lives nowadays are filled with fancy normal mapping and illumination engines, powered by slickly encased hardware that outputs onto super-sharp screens. In short, there's a lot of thought given to aesthetics in the present day. But, it hasn't always been this way and an upcoming art show will showcase the uglier—yet vitally important—gaming hardware of yesteryear.

American Icons gathers select works by Massachusetts artist Jason Brockert, who's done a series of hazy still-life renderings of the Atari 2600, the Commodore 64, the Nintendo Entertainment System and old-school cartridges. Another series of paintings also portray classic Star Wars action figures, with most painted in a quietly contemplative style.

This showing's being put together by nerd culture collective I Am 8-Bit in their downtown L.A. gallery and will open to the public this Friday. Some of the paintings—which are affordable as far as fine art goes—will also be available as prints for those who can't make the show. So, if you're still mourning that Pitfall cartridge that your mom threw away way back when, you can hang up a nostalgic replica in your living room in memory of dear old Harry.

American Icons [I Am 8-Bit]


You can contact Evan Narcisse, the author of this post, at You can also find him on Twitter, Facebook, and lurking around our #tips page.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Should You Buy Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary ? No.

"It's been ten years since Bungie gave Xbox gamers the first Halo game, a console first-person shooter that didn't feel like the weak sister to the genre's PC alpha dogs. From that single title grew blossomed one of video game's most successful franchises, one which reshaped what it meant to play video games with other people. Now, Microsoft's commemorating a decade of Halo by issuing an upgraded remake of the series' first game. Is this trip down memory lane worth your money? Let's take a gut check.
Evan Narcisse, who counts the last Warthog escape in the 2001 Combat Evolved as one of the most thrilling—and frustrating—experiences on the original Xbox: You've played this game before, even if you haven't played Combat Evolved. While the game that started it all is an artifact of the last console cycle, the Halo DNA lived on and evolved into two direct sequels, one spin-off and a prequel. That means that you already know what this experience feels like. Yes, 343 Industries' remastering of the game that made Microsoft's first game console a success is a shiny and well-tempered love letter to Bungie's original code. But, as much nostalgia as I have at revisiting the deadly ringworld and as much as I marvel at the visual upgrades given to the game's sturdy mechanics, there's not enough new here to interest anyone other than Halo super-fans. The memories and nostalgia are powerful, but not so much that I can recommend shelling out $40 for Anniversary. No.

Luke Plunkett, who played so much Blood Gulch he nearly failed university: Despite having copies of Skyrim and Uncharted 3 in the house, I spent a fair bit of the weekend playing and enjoying the crap out of Halo: Anniversary. It's shocking how well this game has aged. I'm not talking about the graphics, whose update is more functional than amazing. I'm talking about the game.
Once you get past the rough edges, which are to be expected in something ten years old, you quickly find that the meat and potatoes of Halo, both in singleplayer and multiplayer, are as enjoyable now as they were in 2001. Well, except for The Library. That sucks as much as ever, but not enough to stop this being a Yes.

Mike Fahey, Whose First Co-Op Experience in Halo: Combat Evolved Sold Him on the Original Xbox: The Xbox was just a giant black box of comedy to me until a 13-year-old neighbor of my parents convinced me to play some Halo: Combat Evolved. I had run over to his house to borrow a couple of games for my newly-purchased PlayStation 2, planning to be there all of five minutes. The next thing I know hours had passed my head was filled with schemes to turn my then meager gas station manager salary into Microsoft's meaty game machine. The experience not only sold me on the Xbox, it rekindled a long dormant passion for first-person shooters that had been obscured by a puffy pink cloud of Japanese role-playing games.
I am terrified of sullying that pure memory with a gussied up version of the game that started it all. I suppose that's a concern with any HD remake, but for this one in particular, having made such an impact, it's quite a profound feeling.

If you've never played Halo: Combat Evolved before I can see picking up a copy of Anniversary just to fill in the missing chapter. As one of the millions of players that played and loved the original game, I'd prefer to keep my memories as they are and let 343 Industries get on with the business of showing us what they can do in Halo 4. No."