Today we pay homage to a phenomenon. One as diffuse and amusing as the internet itself, and as pointless as dog Halloween costumes. I'm speaking, of course, of giant games.
Japanese people are into many things Americans find weird—like YouTube's beloved canine-hosted cooking show or Daito Manabe's light up LED grills or even more insane, a vending machine that distributes live crabs. In light of these cultural oddities, the Japanese phenomenon of visual novels (NVL, or bijuaru noberu), seems relatively normal. A meeting place of books and video games, visual novels are a sort of "Choose-Your-Own-Adventure" for the new generation.
Do you remember when video games came on tiny chips in plastic cartridges? When the CD and 3D graphics just meant ugly games with long load times? Before epic cinematics, spoken dialog, or cordless controllers? Do you still have all of your old games and lament that the consoles, cords, and controllers required to play them have either been stolen by exes or broken while moving apartments?
The video game industry is laboring through its cultural adolescence, and like most adolescents, suffering a severe identity crisis—minus the piercings and bad music. On the mainstream side, big publishers are spending more money on making games than ever before, which has led to major technical achievements, but also a dearth of original IP. No one at EA wants to throw away millions of dollars developing a game that might not make any money, a real risk when creating original games. The sum ...
Great controls are the most important and difficult part of game design. Games with vector graphics and non-existent stories are classics because their creators managed to create a system where using buttons to control a shape on a screen was intuitive and fun. This is the tradition that Pac-Man has left us with, a gaming world in which controlling the character onscreen in an engaging way is the crux of the game's enjoyment.
When you grab a video game off the shelves, finding love is probably not your end goal. Most games focus on letting the player shoot guys, order other guys to shoot guys, or build houses. Mass Effect 2 comes closer than most titles to offering virtual romance, but the relationships are shallow and strictly heterosexual. I found whoring my way around the Normandy much more satisfying as a gameplay option than developing an emotional connection to another character.
The classic Super Mario Bros is perhaps the most beloved video game on Earth. Almost daily, homages to Mario pop up on the web over and over and over again. Everybody loves the charming 2D world of Mario. But what would Mario look like in 3D… and moreover, what would Super Mario feel like as a First Person Shooter game?
Tune in! Below, an attendee of the Game Developers Conference 2011 captures footage of the new eye-popping visual effects in Epic Games' latest upgrade of their Unreal Engine 3, a "toolset used in blockbuster video games, 3D visualizations, digital films and more." If this is what the graphics looks like captured from an audience cell phone, well, one can only imagine what it would look like on your widescreen... The demo, titled "Samaritan", ran on a custom-built PC system in real-time compu...
Nintendo Wii is ubiquitously known for being a family friendly console, but a recent commercial reveals a risqué release for a steamy, adults-only alternative. Called "We Dare", the game is described as a "sexy, quirky, party game that offers a large variety of hilarious, innovative and physical, sometimes kinky, challenges."
Mario in Tetris! Pixel art-style! While the two blocky Nintendo properties are obviously a natural fit, it's hard not to boggle at the audacity of it all. The time lapse below condenses an hour and a half of playing—1,112 lines—into roughly 2 minutes. The cap doesn't quite come off, which is to say it never really goes on, but, just the same, it's a remarkable feat. SOURCE YouTube.
Who is Lara Croft? Video game character. Comic strip hero. Action figure. Actress Angelina Jolie. All wonderful, yet all fictional. If you're looking for a flesh-and-blood archetype, try XtremeJenn, a Lara Croft cosplayer who's linked her real life "hobbies" to the world's beloved Tomb Raider. Found on Unreality Mag, this picture is the real thing. No green screen, no staging. XtremeJenn does everything a badass Tomb Raider should do: skydiving, base jumping, and some serious rock climbing.
According to PlayStation Network @ Home, a new app may allow hackers to ban or unban anyone they please from PSN.
Today, on his Tumblr, Notch shared two very odd—and, to all appearances, completely unrelated—fan-produced Minecraft ads.
For the longest time, Dead Island seemed to be... well, dead. The intriguing zombie game was first revealed back in 2007 by its developer, Techland, with a subpar teaser trailer that compared it to already shelved games in the Resident Evil series and the upcoming Left 4 Dead. But since then, it's been a ghost, thought to be abandoned—until now.
Some folks in South Korea seem to think so. Below, recent images from website All Voices reveal a boot camp for naughty Korean children who skip school, join gangs or commit the (somehow equatable) sin of becoming addicted to video games.
Ever wonder what your brain looks like on video games? Below, Matt Richtel of the New York Times lies in a $3 million M.R.I. scanning tube while playing a simple driving game, as researchers sit by and observe the real-time images inside Richtel's brain.
The world has been overflowing with Microsoft Kinect hacks, each more amazing than the last. The latest innovation, created by a group of engineers at USC, promises an exciting future in gaming (and gets gamers off their asses). The program is called FAAST, and allows for full body motion control in different PC applications, such as World of Warcraft, as demonstrated below: Previously, Hacked Kinect Captures 3D Video in Real Time.
The New Yorker profiles Shigeru Miyamoto, the father of modern video games, whose spawn includes world-changing classics such as Mario and Legend of Zelda:
In every nerd, there is a 12-year-old boy just dying to get out. This week, we bring you the ultimate in indulging your inner kid.
My God, she is a living, breathing, rapid-fire arcade basketball MACHINE. I'd like to see her on a real court. Previously, Beat the Claw Crane. Win the Little Piggy!
This week, we take a break from the holidays and focus on one of our favorite pastimes: video games. With new releases, hacks, and Easter eggs coming out every day, it's easy to be overwhelmed by the choices available. Never fear: we're here to help you sort out the wheat from the chaff.
I know we have our fair share of FarmVille junkies here at WonderHowTo, but none insane enough to shake a baby to death for interrupting their game (um, I hope). Grisly story:
Little boy gamers don't care about coffee tables. But when a little boy gamer grows up, he's gotta have some kind of furniture. Like a giant NES coffee table with a fully functionally, giant NES controller. So Matt (grown boy gamer) built one:
Every day of the week, WonderHowTo curators are hard at work, scouring the web for the greatest and most inspiring how-to videos. Every Friday, we'll highlight our favorite finds.
As a tribute to video game classic, Street Fighter, Hongkiat has compiled a collection of impressively done artwork on the theme. My favorites below; click through for the whole series of 60 (and artist credits).
Every day of the week, WonderHowTo curators are hard at work, scouring the web for the greatest and most inspiring how-to videos. Every Friday, we'll highlight our favorite finds.Make a fireball you can hold in your hands.
Not being much of a video game buff, I haven't been in the loop when it comes to the enormously popular game Red Dead Redemption. Apparently the game is completely dominant in video game sales. Since it's May 18 release, over 5 million units have sold, making it the most popular game since Modern Warfare.
Written by JD Coverly of WonderHowTo World, LoadSave: Want to take a break from all that Red Dead redemption stuff? Well Ubisoft, the makers of the hit game Just Dance, is bringing you Dance on Broadway! The new game releases today, June 15th. Price: $39.99
Via WonderHowTo World, LoadSave: Rock Band 3, coming this Fall, was revealed at none other than USA Today. Fully functional 25 key keyboard, 80+ songs including The Doors and Bohemian Rhapsody, Pro mode, updated guitars, and a kitchen sink are included in this new sequel. USA Today:
Why can't all video gaming be this extreme? I don't know much about F1 Simulators. But, man. The video below sure makes me want one.
...a FarmVille addict, that is. Poor Kira is just one of many who pours way too much time and money into their virtual Facebook homesteads. Zynga’s FarmVille is the most popular of the many Facebook web games. In fact, it attracts more than 75 million players monthly.
WonderHowTo World, LoadSave points us to great resource courtesy of Mashable: "Here are ten computer and arcade games we all know and love that you can now play online and free of charge. If you’re of a certain age, you probably played these games while waiting for your mom to finish grocery shopping. Or they might have been on your very first video game console. We hope you remember them fondly and enjoy playing them again."
Video game ranking site VGChartz reports that Mike Leyde, a 56-year old steel contractor from Riverside, California, has broken Bejeweled 2's scoreboard with a score of 2,147,783,647.
Jeez, Microsoft is really pulling out all the stops lately. First, a whole lotta bling, and now they celebrate their millionth console sold with this limited edition Halo Xbox 360, designed by Richard Taylor and the Weta Workshop. The one-of-a-kind console is being auctioned off on Ebay, and the winning amount will be matched by up to $10,000 by Microsoft New Zealand for a donation to Cure Kids.
FarmVille brings out the inner Picasso. Check out this collection of work by different FarmVille arteests.
Take some tips from the masters themselves. Kotaku interviews game developer Zynga, "who has generously offered to help, by sharing FarmVille strategy tips on how to make the most of your land, your crops, and your livestock".
Instant web classic. 5-year-old Ryota tears it up at dance dance revolution. If he's lucky, maybe someday Ryota will exceed this teen's suspiciously amazing DDR godliness. Previously, HOLY COW! Who Taught White Baby To Dance?
London based company CrystalRoc was commissioned by Microsoft Australia to fully Swarovski crystal-ize an XBOX console for a PR campaign. The console took more than 11,520 individual Swarovski crystals and over 70 hours to produce. That sure makes one expensive console...
Get a little perspective on FarmVille hysteria, via FarmVille World, written by tenebrism: Did you know it only took five weeks to make FarmVille? That it currently has over 80,000,000 users? That FarmVille farmers outnumber real farmers in the United States by a ration of 80 to 1?
And the best part? No glasses required. Avatar has unleashed utter 3D mania, and Nintendo plans to jump in sometime this coming year. Not much information has been provided, but here is what has been explicitly stated, via Nintendo's press release: