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Tag Archives: Game On

Wii U is now the best new console you can buy

Thanks to some terrific new games and a fresh lease of life, Nintendo’s Wii U has gone from zero to hero in recent months. In fact, Mark Butler argues that it’s currently the most desirable next gen console money can buy. Not long ago, Nintendo’s Wii U console had become something of a laughing stock. A …

Gaming November 26, 2014

Ubisoft’s side quest system is boring and broken

Fed up with Ubisoft’s repetitive, tedious approach to optional missions in both their established juggernauts and major new IPs, open world enthusiast Mark Butler argues that there’s nothing worse than maps jam-packed with unrewarding things to do – and that side quests should be treated with more respect. In any recent free-roaming, people-slaying Ubisoft sandbox, there …

Gaming November 19, 2014

2014: the year gaming was turned upside down

You may not have realised it, but this year has seen some of gaming’s most ingrained and embedded recent norms tossed aside and turned asunder – in a good way. Mark Butler explains why 2014 will probably be remembered as the start of an exciting new chapter in the medium’s history. According to ancient biblical …

Gaming November 12, 2014

Game On: Gamers need to toughen up

With two recent Triple A releases coming under fire for the significant level of challenge they pose, Mark Butler argues that many mainstream gamers have become far too mollycoddled in recent years – and need to toughen up to truly appreciate the excellent work before them. [Be more like Ripley, people] Though they offer very different gaming experiences, …

Gaming Gaming Opinion November 5, 2014

How to throw the ultimate Halloween gaming night

Whether you’re playing alone (get some kick-ass headphones) or with friends (get some kick-ass snacks), there are few better ways to spend Halloween night than with an awesome selection of chilling, nerve-wracking video games. [AAAAGH!] So after you’ve chosen your costume (Ruvik is so hot this year), it’s time to dim the lights, don your brown …

Gaming October 29, 2014

Game On: Horror gaming should embrace unpredictable enemies

With Alien: Isolation taking an ingenious and terrifying approach to its monster behaviour, Mark Butler argues that free-roaming AI could be the future of a genre that has become bogged-down in predictable enemy patterns and appearances At first, you’re terrified. You recoil with fear as a deep roar is heard nearby, just moments after pulling that …

Game On: Shadow Of Mordor is the sleeper hit of the year

2014 has been defined by over-hyped, over-marketed mediocrity. How refreshing then to see a great Triple A action game come triumphantly to the fore despite having little fanfare preceding it. Mark Butler salutes Middle Earth: Shadow Of Mordor. If Watch Dogs, Titanfall and Destiny are the armies of Gondor – desperately holding the flame-lidded gaze …

Game On: Titan falls – why developers need to think smaller, not bigger

With long-mooted MMO epic Titan having been mothballed, there are serious implications for the video game industry as a whole. Mark Butler argues that developers and publishers need to re-think their ‘bigger means better’ mentality. The news that MMO kings Blizzard have scrapped their colossal new project Titan, after a whopping 7 years in development, understandably shook …

Gaming Gaming Opinion September 24, 2014

Game On: The hype has got to stop

Destiny is the second high-profile release of the year to disappoint many players, while simultaneously breaking sales records. Mark Butler argues that hysterical pre-release hype is conning consumers into expecting revolutionary experiences from unremarkable games. If gamers were to decide upon a new official anthem to reflect their feelings about the current state of the medium, it …

Gaming Gaming Opinion September 17, 2014

Game On: Video games make for a great spectator sport – seriously

Buoyed by a recent group gaming session and the big-money acquisition of Twitch, long-time Let’s Play enthusiast Mark Butler argues that watching other people play video games is one of life’s great pleasures – and those who mock are simply swimming against the tide. [League Of Legends championships in North America – picture: Getty] As someone who …

Gaming Gaming Opinion September 10, 2014

Game On: Judging the 10 most expensive games ever made

Said to have cost an astonishing $500 million, online shooter Destiny launches next week to extraordinary expectations – with both critical acclaim and near-unprecedented sales figures a must. But does money usually buy success in gaming? Does big budget automatically mean better? In a bid to find out, Mark Butler offers his thoughts on the 10 most expensive games …

Gaming Gaming Opinion September 3, 2014

Game On: Microsoft don’t actually know what gamers want

Disastrous PR debacles have seen Microsoft’s Xbox One console slip well behind the PlayStation 4 in terms of sales, enthusiasm and future prospects. But Mark Butler argues that mis-judged announcements are just the tip of the iceberg. [Halo 5 will sell – but relying on past glories just won’t cut it anymore] Over recent weeks …

Game On: It’s good to be the underdog

Gaming is rediscovering the lost art of steep obstacles and desperate struggle – and this can only be a good thing. Mark Butler argues that video games are at their best when the player is a beleaguered, brow-beaten underdog. [Iconic underdog: Pac Man’s helplessness was a huge part of the appeal] Devotees of epic open-world adventure Skyrim …

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