Weighs as much as George Foreman, and it looks like one too

PlayStation 3 (2007)

I moved house recently, which brought with it all sorts of unforeseen issues. The time and costs involved in moving your own stuff out is fine – you can plan for that. But in our case, we went without Wi-Fi for almost two weeks and I know you’ll agree with me when I say that that is a major deprivation of one’s human rights. I would put a lack of wireless internet for two weeks right up there with having no food, water or shelter – it’s a frightfully tough thing to get over.

Continue reading “Weighs as much as George Foreman, and it looks like one too”

Confusing memories of load times, dangerous polygons, demo discs and Croc

ps1 logo

PlayStation 1 (1996)

For almost the entire duration of the Nintendo 64’s lifespan in Europe, from the not-so-lengthy 1997 to 2001, I was all over the weekly Nintendo magazines. I had made the conscious decision to get a Nintendo 64 over a PlayStation 1, see. And it was entirely my decision, because I was 6 years old and bratty, so my older brother had to do as I said and ask for the correct console from Santa for Christmas. Never mind that every single one of his friends was getting the much-vaunted PS1, little Burkey wanted the N64 for its Nintendo franchises and he was about ready to befoul his pants if Father Christmas didn’t do the biz.

Continue reading “Confusing memories of load times, dangerous polygons, demo discs and Croc”

I was taking black-and-white selfies before it was cool

gb camera logo

Game Boy Camera (1998)

Although my Instagram is by now world-famous (no less than 300 followers, and a Verified blue tick surely in the post), I’m no photographer. If I’m vomiting a picture of my collection all over ‘the Gram’, or worse still, if I’m plastering my mug up there, I don’t even take the time to take the perfect shot. Much better, I feel, to take a scattergun approach, clog up my phone with four thousand images of my gurning mug, put the heaviest, most flattering filter I can find over the best of that poor bunch of 4,000, and put together some witty caption. Hashtag it into oblivion, and there you go – another slice of fried gold.

Continue reading “I was taking black-and-white selfies before it was cool”

7 of the Coolest Controllers

7 controllers logo

7 of the Coolest Controllers (2014)

Controllers, controllers. You’ve held them a thousand times, pressed the buttons zillions of times, you’ve probably even broken them a couple of times. But they’re your portals into the wonderful world of gaming – they are your aerials. They’re as arguably as iconic as the games consoles themselves – at least, when the controllers in question are designed properly.

Here, we take a look at seven of the best controllers to grace the sprawling galaxy of gaming. The list may go in ascending order, but make no mistake, all seven of these controllers are out-and-out winners (and that’s not just comforting talk for the losers either). Let us begin!

Continue reading “7 of the Coolest Controllers”

16 of the Proest Game Distractions

 poss game distraction border

16 of the Proest Game Distractions (2013)

Adj. pro: Of the highest or finest quality; exceptionally good of its kind. (pro-er, pro-est)

To be honest, I don’t tend to complete many games. I did back in the day – when I could, because I was surrounded by either shitty games or impossible games, and even my 4-year-old self got tired of that shit. But these days, when have tended to be easier than ever, I’m far more likely to play either 20 minutes of a game and then put something else on while dismissing the first one, or else play the first half of the game, download the soundtrack, look at Wikipedia or a dedicated Wikia for the plot and character details and then YouTube the ending. Isn’t that terrible?

But just because you don’t wind up beating the game, it doesn’t mean your money has been wasted. Far from it! Here, we look at what most normal people would call “mini-games” or “alternate game modes” but what I, being a bit differently-abled, like to call “distractions”. It’s a fine thing for games to have lots of different playing modes and side-games, so long as they don’t get in the way of the overall, you know, game. Indeed, I sort of look upon games that don’t have any such mini-games (sorry, “distractions”) as being like deprived children with no cool Christmas presents to show off to me. What the fuck do I care that you have nice hair or a wonderful voice, dull child, when you didn’t even get a go-kart this year for me to mess around in? Below are 16 of the finest distractions that gaming has to offer, 16 different timesinks that boast enough depth or playability to make up the value of the game’s price alone. As usual, I try to pick only one game from any particular series. But, as is also usual, I tend to end up breaking that one rule. Please do enjoy, and these are in no real order ‘cept the very last one.

Continue reading “16 of the Proest Game Distractions”

11 Poorest Powerups

 powerups banner

11 Poorest Powerups (2013)

Please be advised that this feature contains strong language.

INTRO

You get killed an awful lot of times in video games. Sometimes in the customary ways (falling into curiously bottomless pits, being blown away by a Franchi SPAS-12 shotgun, being crushed by some hulking enemy, falling foul of an evil glitch put in by negligent developers); others in more interesting ways (being beheaded by a chainsaw, being swallowed whole by a massive fish, having a cow land on your head arsefirst). You lose again and again, and the aggravation mounts. What do you need? You need powerups – certain new abilities or items that can swing the game back in your favour. Some hand you such a terrific advantage that they are absolute must-haves, while others give you incremental boosts that all add up to let you topple that tough as nails boss.

But not every powerup is up to scratch. Here, in no particular order, we look at 11 powerups which are at best non-offensive and at worst actively conspire against the player. Note that imitation powerups that do actively harm or impede the player character, like the Poison Mushroom of Super Mario Bros.: The Lost Levels, do not count. No, these are powerups which the game purports to be beneficial but, really, the programmers might as well not have bothered. Or worse, these items can be so worthless as to be damaging, if employed in the wrong way. Note that a powerup here can be any and all kinds of things to aid the player, from an item in Zelda to a spell in Final Fantasy. Please enjoy.

Continue reading “11 Poorest Powerups”