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New Pokken Tournament Trailer Reveals Shadow Mega Mewtwo February 18, 2016

Posted by Maniac in Game News.
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The Pokémon Company released the newest trailer for the upcoming fighting game Pokkén Tournament. Check it out below!

Nintendo has been teasing that they will offer a playable Shadow Mewtwo character for this upcoming game, and this trailer shows that it can Mega Evolve.  This seems like something right out of left field for me, because as far as I know, we’ve only seen Shadow Pokémon in the GameCube titles Pokémon Colosseum and Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness. It would be nice to see these games remade for the Wii U.

If you can’t wait to play this game, Nintendo is doing an exclusive pre-access tournament with GameStop stores across the US. Check out all the details here.  Winners will get prizes like a Wii U, a copy of Pokkén Tournament and a trip to Pokémon World Championships 2016!

Pokkén Tournament is coming March 2016 exclusively for the Wii U.


Miitomo Site Launches February 17, 2016

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Today, Nintendo has launched the website Miitomo, and is offering players the chance to pre-register for it before the service goes live!

Miitomo is planned as a social networking site for Nintendo lovers. In it, you can create a Mii and use it as your social avatar for communicating with others.  A dedicated SmartPhone app is planned for iOS and Android devices, and that app will launch with the service in March 2016.

I think Nintendo is in a great position to launch a social networking community. They did a great job with the Miiverse community back when the Wii U launched, I could easily see this service being used for people who outright refuse to use other services like Facebook due to privacy concerns.

Preregistration will continue until the service officially launches. Anyone who preregisters during this period will earn some exclusive platinum points for use when Nintendo launches the My Nintendo club site.

Pokemon Dream Radar Review February 16, 2016

Posted by Maniac in Reviews.
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The original version of this review was written by our site’s Editor-in-Chief and published for the Poké Amino community. It has been republished here by its author in honor of Pokémon’s upcoming 20th Anniversary!

I would like to start off this review by asking the reader two very simple questions. First, do you have a copy of Pokémon Black 2 or Pokémon White 2 that you are either playing or plan to play? Second, do you have a Nintendo 3DS system? If the answer is “yes” to both of those questions you need to download this program right now.

Pokemon Dream Radar is a downloadable title for the Nintendo 3DS. It is an Augmented Reality (AR) game which uses the 3DS camera to project Pokemon and in-game items over a live video feed. In the game, you play as a researcher for a Pokémon Professor investigating the dream world for rare Pokémon. The player is expected to burst dream clouds which can hold dream orbs, Pokemon and items. The game does not make use of the 3DS’s 3D feature, so anyone playing the game on a 2DS should have an identical experience to anyone playing on a 3DS.

Any orbs the player obtains can be used to upgrade their equipment, making the game easier, and any items or Pokemon the player obtains can be transferred to the player’s save game for Pokemon Black 2 or Pokemon White 2 using either game’s Pokémon Link feature. New dream clouds spawn on a timer, giving the game a passing similarity for players who enjoy free-to-play titles, but unlike a FTP game at no point are you ever prevented from playing the game, nor are you ever asked to pay more money than the initial cost needed to purchase the game on the eShop. You can, however use 3DS play coins, obtained by walking with your 3DS system on, to respawn dream clouds to their maximum. Five play coins will automatically respawn the full amount of dream clouds you can currently hold, but you can only redeem coins three times a day. Otherwise clouds automatically respawn on their own over time. My advice would be to play Dream Radar in between play sessions of Pokemon Black 2 or White 2.  Once you’ve depleted your clouds, go back to the game while they respawn. Rinse, repeat.

I found the AR gameplay to be a lot of fun. I’m a huge fan of AR games like Spirit Camera, and I think the 3DS works really well as an AR device. While the gameplay experience is nothing like what you’d find in a traditional Pokémon generation game, I grew up playing FPS games and found it to be a nice change of pace.

If you want to use the app just for capturing Pokémon and using them in your game, the process to perform a data transfer with this app is pretty easy. Here’s a video showing you how it’s done.

I cannot stress enough how important it is to keep regularly sending your capture data from Dream Radar. The app can only hold six captured Pokémon, six items, and six legendary Pokémon in the transfer queue. If that content is not transferred to a physical retail copy of Black 2 or White 2, it will override the oldest captured data to make room for new captures, and whatever data it dumps could be lost.

It’s important to know that you can get some pretty powerful exclusive Pokémon with this app, and that should not be underestimated. All in all, this game was essential for me as I started my journey through Pokemon Black 2. If I didn’t have my Slowpoke with me, I don’t think I would have had as easy a time defeating the first Gym as I did, and my Thunderus was instrumental in helping me defeat the Elite 4 and the Pokémon League Champion.

The game does have an ending, and I was able to reach the ending of Dream Radar before I completed my first play through of Black 2. As the credits began to roll I felt a strong sense of accomplishment, as I knew the special Pokémon I obtained playing the game would join me as I continued to play Black 2. Perhaps if this game was a completely isolated experience which did not tie into any other Pokémon titles I would not find myself as willing to recommend it as I am, but given its low price of $3.99 US, fun gameplay, and the Pokémon Black 2/White 2 connectivity, I have to give this game my recommendation.  Enjoy, trainers!

Pokemon Mew Giveaway Right Now (UPDATE: Contest Over) February 13, 2016

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UPDATE: Contest has ended. We have a winner!

Nintendo is giving away Mew for free this month through various retailers. However, not everyone has the ability to go to these retailers nor did all of the retailers who should have Mew codes actually received them.
If you’ve been waiting fifteen years to finally get your own Mew, wait no longer because we’ve got one here for you.

So if you want a level 100 Mew and don’t have the ability to get one yourself, we are giving away one code right now!

All you need to do is follow us our official Twitter feed and Tweet us a picture of yourself holding up a copy of a sixth generation Pokémon game. Pokémon X, Pokémon Y, Pokémon Omega Ruby or Pokémon Alpha Sapphire will all work.  If you purchased your copy digitally, that’s fine too. Just send us a picture of yourself holding up your 3DS with your home screen clearly highlighting the digital copy of whichever Pokémon game you purchased!

The first person who adds us on Twitter and Tweets us a clear picture of what we asked for will receive the Mew code!  Good luck to everyone!

Mew Giveaway Today (Update: Expired) February 13, 2016

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Pokémon Trainers throughout the internet, hear me.  Today, we’re announcing a giveaway!

Since the late 90s, I have wanted to earn a legitimate Mew that I could use during one of Pokémon’s epic single-player journeys.  Unfortunately, legitimate Mews were hard to come by…until now!

That’s right, today we’ll be giving one lucky site reader a code for a Level 100 Mew!  Details of what you’ll need to do to win this giveaway will be coming later today but needless to say you will need some version of a Nintendo 3DS system, a copy of one of the following games, Pokémon X, Pokémon Y, Pokémon Omega Ruby, or Pokémon Alpha Sapphire, and internet access!

This contest will probably only be compatible with North American copies of the game, so just be aware of that.  Stay tuned to the site for all the contest details.  Good luck to everyone!

UPDATE:  Contest Ended!


Video Game Songs Deserving of a Grammy February 12, 2016

Posted by Maniac in Editorials.
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All content in the following article is protected as free speech under the First Amendment.

On Monday night, a farce will take place where a bunch of old people will give meaningless awards to musicians who just happen to be popular this year.  You may know this event as the Grammys and whether you’re a music enthusiast or not, you know that the event which claims to award outstanding music achievements is hardly a mark of actual quality. This is compounded by the fact that the event just will not get with the times.  Several years ago, a Grammy was awarded to the song “Baba Yetu”, a great song certainly deserving of the award, but how was the song even eligible for the award that year, since it was nominated nearly five years after it was produced for the game Civilization IV?

The Grammys, for some reason which completely escapes logic, does not have a catagory for Best Song Produced for a Video Game, and because of that, “Baba Yetu” did not win its award until the song was eventually released on CD.  How can this be?  Video game music is far more than just a series of beeps and bloops. Folks like Tommy Tallarico have made their careers composing and performing music for video games.  In fact, the budget to score a video game’s music rivals the budget of Hollywood films, and exceeds television production budgets.  They deserve an award category!

So, since the Grammys won’t do it, I thought I would award the outstanding songs over the past two decades which were overlooked by that organization. Hypothetically, “Baba Yetu” would have deservingly won that award in 2005, but what about every other year?  There were a lot of great songs produced for games over the past twenty years, and I think its time for me to do what the Grammys won’t and award the best video game song of each year!

Before we get started, there are a few rules I need to make clear. First off, we’re only going to name one song per year, and the song MUST have been produced exclusively for a video game. That means licensed tracks of existing songs do not count, but tracks that were produced for a game that later got included on a separate album are okay. That also means the song must contain a vocal track with lyrics, otherwise it could be considered part of the game’s background score, and that would be an entirely different award!

On a side note, If you would like to hear thoughts about The Grammys from someone who has an actual background in music, I recommend watching a review of the song “Walking in Memphis” by Todd in the Shadows.  Apparently, even actual musicians think the award show is a joke, and he could explain why better than I certainly can.

So without further ado, let’s get started.  We’re going to start this list in the year 1998, with a song that you’re all probably familiar with.

“The Best is Yet to Come” – Rika Muranaka – Metal Gear Solid (1998)

Metal Gear Solid is one of the greatest games ever produced, and the song “The Best is Yet to Come” is the perfect track to close out this amazing game.  It’s hard to explain just how this song is as great as it is without spoiling the ending, but depending on which ending you earned in the game, it could either work as a bittersweet symphony of your failure to save the life of someone you care about, or as a triumphant song to cap off a job well done.  Regardless, in both cases the song serves as a reminder that the possibilities the future held for these characters, and for the player, were bright.  When Metal Gear Solid was remade for the GameCube in 2004 as Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes, almost everything from the original game was replaced, except for this song.  “The Best is Yet to Come” remained completely untouched.  It’s not hard to imagine why.

“Eyes on Me” – Faye Wong and Nobuo Uematsu – Final Fantasy VIII (1999)

This song would probably not be my own decision to include on this list since as of the time this article is being written I haven’t actually played Final Fantasy VIII (since it hasn’t been ported to PS4 yet), but it’s overwhelming popularity alone merits its inclusion on this list.  The hate of the reviewer known as The Spoony One aside, this love song begins after an emotional moment where the game’s hero does something truly stupid to save the woman he loves. It’s a great moment that has a reputation of bringing grown men to tears and that is why it deserves an award.

“Melodies of Life” – Emiko Shiratori and Nobuo Uematsu – Final Fantasy IX (2000)

Square Enix follows up Final Fantasy VIII’s “Eyes on Me” with Final Fantasy IX’s “Melodies of Life”.  Whether you prefer the English version of this song or the Japanese version, there’s no denying this song’s impact in popular culture.  Final Fantasy IX was intended to be a love letter to fans of the original Final Fantasy, directly from the creator of the franchise.  The song perfectly captures the ideals of this game, and this song in particular has become something of a theme to the entire franchise.  Now that this game has just been re-released on iOS and Android SmartPhones and Tablets, a new generation finally has the chance to play this game for the first time and hear this wonderful song.

“Can’t Say Goodbye to Yesterday” – Rika Muranaka – Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty (2001)

We’ve got another track from another Metal Gear Solid game, and one that truly deserves a place on this list.  If you were like me and watched the trailer for MGS2 back when it was first announced at E3 2000, you heard the first few seconds of it as the Konami logo faded onto the screen.  Like “The Best is Yet to Come” before it, this song served two purposes.  The first was to bookend the story of an amazing title, which in my opinion surpassed its predecessor, and the second was to remind the player of all of the possibilities the future held for these characters.  What can I say about the song itself?  The lyrics are magical, the piano medley was charming, and Rika’s vocals were incredible!  Its a great song deserving a spot on this list!

“Simple and Clean” – UTADA – Kingdom Hearts (2002)

On its surface, you would assume a song like “Simple and Clean” does not match well with a video game, and you’d be wrong.  This song’s strength is just how flexible it is. Throughout the first Kingdom Hearts game, you’ll hear this song played at several different tempos, with each one setting the mood of each scene its found in.  While the first version you hear of the song during the opening sequence is fast paced and sets a mood perfectly for the player to start exploring this exciting new world, the slower tempo of the version played during the game’s ending invokes a sense of wonder and accomplishment, signifying that the player’s difficult journey has ended for the time being, bringing it perfectly in line with the Disney animated classics I remembered from my childhood.  In fact the song was so flexible it would go on to get used in several other Kingdom Hearts games including RE: Chain of Memories and Birth by Sleep.  Its even woven into portion’s of the game’s orchestral score!

“1000 Words” -SWEETBOX – Final Fantasy X-2 (2003)

I love this song. From its haunting lyrics about two lovers trying to make their relationship work to its powerful vocal performance capable of emoting just as much as singing, this song belongs in every top ten best video game song list.  Its melody perfectly matches the in-game location it is being performed in, and it comes at an integral part of the game’s story, setting the stage perfectly for the game’s epic climax.  In fact, there’s a controversy over which version of this song is better, the original Japanese version, or the dubbed English version. Personally, I prefer the English version, because the English version was performed as duet and seeing the in-game duet featuring the characters Lenne and Yuna in the English version (opposed to the Japanese version where only Lenne sang) worked better for me.

“Snake Eater” – Cynthia Harrell – Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater (2004)

This song is a great blast from the past, and perfectly sets the stage for the game.  Let’s be honest, every James Bond movie can count on having a rocking opening credits sequence featuring a song produced strictly for the film.  It sets the tone for the movie and lets the audience know what kind of style they’ll be witnessing.  Hideo Kojima chose to open Metal Gear Solid 3‘s main story the exact same way.  As a game which serves as a prequel to the previous Metal Gear games, set in an entirely different era, Kojima needed to make the player clear that this was going to have to be a different kind of game, and I think the choice to use this song and its accompanying James Bond-esque credits sequence was the perfect decision!  Not only is the title sequence which accompanies the song perfect, but Harrell’s performance is great, and the lyrics fit perfectly with the game’s themes.

“Baba Yetu” -Christopher Tin – Civilization 4 (2005)


“Take Me Home” – After Midnight Project – Prey (2006)

I have a deep soft spot for this song, as I loved the game Prey, and am probably only one of few people who actually remember it.  Following up on Max Payne 2‘s decision to end with an original song, the next game to be produced by 3D Realms would also end with an original song, and I think “Take Me Home” was the perfect choice.  In Prey, you’re abducted by aliens and must use the powers of your ancestors to free yourself and return to Earth.  What better song to embody this than “Take Me Home”?  On top of that, the melody is catchy, timed perfectly with the game’s end credits on the Xbox 360 and PC versions, and the lyrics are heartbreaking, fitting perfectly with the heavy personal losses Prey‘s protagonist must endure during his journey to free himself.  My only complaint?  Personally, I think I did a better job editing a music video for the song than the people who actually were paid to produce a music video did, but that’s not a mark against this song.

“Still Alive” – Ellen McClain and Jonathan Coulton – Portal (The Orange Box) (2007)

I’m sure this song’s inclusion will not surprise anyone, everyone loves this song!  This song is a perfect combination of everything just going right.  It plays at the best possible moment, serving as the end credits song for the game.  Its lyrics are hilarious, in fact, game journalist Geoff Keighly actually called it the “best song ever written for a video game”.  The vocal performance is incredible, sung masterfully by the actress who plays the game’s antagonist. Her deadpan delivery of the threatening lyrics just works so well.  Now, you can debate which version of the song you like best, but personally, I prefer Coulton’s version (which he will frequently perform live in concert), but the original version cannot be ignored.  In fact, Coulton was asked to perform the song on national television at the end of 2007, it was that popular and was a great way to cap off the year.

“Still Alive (Theme to Mirror’s Edge)” – Lisa Miskovski – Mirror’s Edge (2008)

In Mirror’s Edge, a city of glass is your playground.  Inspired by just a single screenshot from the game, this song was produced and its melody is just perfect.  Like “Simple and Clean” this is another one of those kinds of songs that is very flexible.  In fact, a whole album was published just for this one song…and remixes of the song in every different way imaginable!  On top of that, the song had an epic music video featuring vocalist Lisa Miskovski which literally shattered the wall between our world and the game’s.  When Mirror’s Edge was eventually released on iPhone and iPad a few years ago, “Still Alive” was still in the game, and remixes would play in the game menu and during levels, giving me hope that this song would become the theme song of the entire franchise.  I have no idea if it’ll be included in the next Mirror’s Edge game, but here’s to hoping!  If you haven’t heard it yet, you might still be able to download this song on MP3 or WAV on your PS3 from the PlayStation Store.

“Girlfriend” – Kabbage Boy – Brutal Legend (2009)

Roadies can typically fix anything…except this song.  “Girlfriend” was created to parody the overwhelming deluge of “bands” designed by corporate overlords to appeal to certain younger demographics.  It steals elements from other great genres like heavy metal in order to instantly appeal to today’s consumer market trends.  Then it goes on to pander to the cheering girls listening to it by offering them promises of friendship and love.  This song plays at the beginning of Brutal Legend with the intention to show the player what is wrong with music today, and that the music which actually inspired this game was in fact…inspiring.  That all said I love this song because of how freaking absurd it is, and once I unlocked the track in-game I had it in my soundtrack rotation as I drove around the game’s world in my hot rod.  If you want to hear more, I’m afraid I don’t have much to tell you.  Don’t worry about looking up other songs from Kabbage Boy, they don’t exist, although I think Richard Steven Horvitz (Invader Zim, Psychonauts) may have voiced one of the band members.

“Poet and the Muse” – Old Gods of Asgard – Alan Wake (2010)

I could seriously dedicate an entire essay to this song all on its own, it’s just that important.  The song was “inspired” by the love story which brewed between Tom the Poet and his girlfriend Barbara Jagger, and tells the story of their tragic downfall, but its lyrics and melody could just as easily be applied to the game’s protagonist Alan Wake and his wife Alice.  The song is not only beautiful, its integral to the game’s plot.  Alan and the player spend much of the game seeking answers, and after an exhaustive search they find this song.  I’m hesitant to say more, because a lot of players may get the chance to play Alan Wake for the first time through Backwards Compatibility if they buy a copy of Quantum Break on the Xbox One, so you’ll just have to play the game to hear it for yourselves.  If you want to hear more from Old Gods of Asgard, I’m afraid they don’t really exist…but Poets of the Fall does, and they are the band who actually performed this song.

“Want You Gone” – Jonathan Coulton and Ellen McClain – Portal 2 (2011)

Another Coulton classic. While I admit I don’t enjoy this song as much as I enjoyed “Still Alive”, this song is still a hilarious romp which deserves a spot on this list.  Jonathan Coulton and Ellen McClain returned for another song to end another Portal game, and while it is performed in a different style than “Still Alive” was, it’s still a hilarious song which meshes threatening lyrics with deadpan seriousness.  While it took a while for me to get into this song, once the tempo began to pick up, it had me.  No question about it, I prefer Ellen’s version of this song!

“Balance Slays the Demon” – Old Gods of Asgard – Alan Wake’s American Nightmare (2012)

This hard rock song perfectly meshes with the grindhouse feel of the second game in the Alan Wake franchise.  Once again performed by The Old Gods of Asgard, a fictional in-game band responsible for some of the tracks from the first Alan Wake game, this single perfectly captures a battle between darkness and light, which serves as the theme for the downloadable title.  I’m hoping this game may get a resurgence now that Alan Wake’s American Nightmare has just been brought to the Xbox One through Backwards Compatibility.  If you do plan to play the game on your Xbox One, either because you’re buying it as a digital download or because you’re getting it with a preorder of the Xbox One version of Quantum Break, don’t forget to check out the song’s official music video in the game’s bonus section.  It’s awesome!

Special Nominees

We couldn’t just end the article there, could we?  Here’s some songs that just could not make the cut.

“The Late Goodbye” – Poets of the Fall – Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne (2003)

“The Late Goodbye” is the song that revealed the band Poets of the Fall to the entire world.  Based on a poem written by Sam Lake, “The Late Goodbye” is the ultimate tragic love song perfectly suited for a game touting itself as “A Film Noir Love Story”.  The song is occasionally teased throughout Max Payne 2.  A janitor will be listening to it on his headphones, and someone else could be heard singing it in another room before you enter, but you won’t hear the song in its entirety until the game’s credits start to roll.  That makes this song, in a way, a reward for completing the game.

“You’re Not Here” – Akria Yamaoka and Mary Elizabeth McGlynn – Silent Hill 3 (2003)

Whether you know this track from the opening cutscene in Silent Hill 3 or as an unlockable track in Dance Dance Revolution Extreme, this is a great song.  It has a great vocal performance backed up by the legendary musical stylings of Akira Yamaoka.  Unfortunatly, 2003 was a very competitive year for songs with at least two other songs up for nomination, and because of that, we had to choose a different one.

“Blow Me Away” – Breaking Benjamin – Halo 2 (2004)

This song’s inclusion on the list is a little iffy. While the song was included in its entirety with vocals on Halo 2‘s Official Soundtrack (Vol 1), only the instrumental version played during the game, and it is still considered a little iffy if this song was intended for Halo 2 or if it had already been produced prior to it.

“Sanctuary” – UTADA – Kingdom Hearts II (2005)

Since “Baba Yetu” claimed 2005’s Grammy, I felt the year didn’t need to be included in this list. Sadly that meant the elimination of “Sancturary”, the opening theme to Kingdom Hearts II. On first glance, the song was used in the exact same way “Simple and Clean” was in the first Kingdom Hearts game, it was a song which played through the opening cutscene, but there was a big difference between the opening cutscene of the first Kingdom Hearts and the second one. While the first Kingdom Hearts game only had to set the mood, establish the game’s setting, and foreshadow future events in its opening cutscene, Kingdom Hearts II‘s introduction had to do a lot more than that. It had to establish the earlier game’s history for new players, and as a player going into it who hadn’t played the (then) GBA-exclusive game Chain of Memories yet, there was a lot I needed to know.  The song did a great job helping me understand what I missed, without having me get bogged down in endless backstory.

“My Hands” – Leona Lewis – Final Fantasy XIII (2010) 

This one was hard not to include. While the song was used, vocals and all, at the end of Final Fantasy XIII, this song was a pre existing recording licensed by Square Enix to use for the western versions of Final Fantasy XIII. It was not produced exclusively for this game, and is not included in the original Japanese version. That having been said, this song is so fitting I am shocked that it wasn’t made specifically for the game!  I applaud Square Enix’s Western branches for choosing to license it.

“Children of the Elder God” – Old Gods of Asgard – Alan Wake (2010)

I’m going to be honest, this song didn’t win because “Poet and the Muse” did. While this song came up at an awesome moment, (I mean who doesn’t love the idea of a gun battle on a rock stage -ed), “Poet and the Muse” was integral to Alan Wake‘s biggest story reveal, and that is why that song was chosen instead.

And that is the end of our list. In case you’re wondering why we did not include any songs produced in the past three years, it’s because we decided that it is far too soon to make those decisions.  Time will tell what could end up winning, but I feel the benefit of some perspective is important to the selection process.  Feel free to post your thoughts below!

Quantum Break Coming to Windows 10 Day and Date With Xbox One Version February 11, 2016

Posted by Maniac in Game News.
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Microsoft responded to the pleas of the entire internet today and confirmed that Quantum Break, the first game ever announced for the Xbox One, will be coming to the PC!  Here’s the official confirmation by Major Nelson and all the details you’ll need to know about it!

That’s right!  Anyone who buys Quantum Break on Xbox One will ALSO get themselves a free copy of Alan Wake (with both DLC episodes) which they can play on their Xbox One using Backwards Compatibility.  Anyone who preorders the Xbox One version of Quantum Break (either digitally or through a participating retailer) will get a free copy of the PC version of Quantum Break, and a copy of Alan Wake’s American Nightmare for the Xbox One (playable through Xbox One Backwards Compatibility).

Oh and yes, Alan Wake (and its subsequent DLC) and Alan Wake’s American Nightmare are coming to Xbox One’s Backwards Compatibility lineup!

The PC version of Quantum Break has some pretty steep system requirements, requiring at minimum an Intel i5 Processor and an Nvidia 760 GPU.  Obviously I would recommend an Intel i7 and Nvidia 980 for best performance.  The game will also require Windows 10, so if you’re using Windows 7 or Windows 8, now might be the time to finally perform that system upgrade you’ve been putting off?

Quantum Break is coming to Xbox One AND Windows 10 PCs April 5th, 2016.

Let’s Play Final Fantasy VII (Part 9) February 10, 2016

Posted by Maniac in Let's Play, Site Videos.
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One day after the announcement that Final Fantasy IX can now be downloaded on SmartPhones and Tablets everywhere, Maniac grabbed the last bottle of Bawls he had and decided to resume his Let’s Play of Final Fantasy VII.

When we last left our heroes, they were trying to evacuate Shinra Tower, let’s see if they can escape!

Final Fantasy VII is out now for PC, iOS, Android, PS1, PS4 and PS3.

You Will Be Missed, GameTrailers February 10, 2016

Posted by Maniac in Editorials, You Will Be Missed.
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In 2006, my Sony PSP received a software update which gave it the ability to play pretty decent quality video files I could store on a Memory Stick.  While I had the ability to convert most of the video files I wanted to the PSP’s new video format, some websites wanted to be at the cutting edge of technology and offered plenty of their site’s video content available to download in that format.  I  downloaded a review of the game Dead Rising for the Xbox 360 to my PSP and watched it. I thought the video was well written, with some great editing, and I agreed with its conclusions.

That was the first time I came across content produced by the website GameTrailers. Yesterday, in an announcement I’m still trying to believe, the people who were employed by the site have announced they were all let go.

I’ve been following gaming news for over fifteen years and I’ve been involved in the industry for over ten years as a staff writer on various sites. I understand that not all companies last forever, but there comes a time when you are so caught up in the activities of an organization that when it shuts down, a part of you goes with it. It’s happened to me more times than I can remember, and here’s a story about another one. It is a sad story to see such great potential end abruptly, but we have to move on, and we will never forget.

In Summer 2007 I was working a college job and I became obsessed with a game called The Darkness. When I first saw a commercial for it air on TV, I immediately became interested in obtaining it. Usually games rarely released during the summer, but this game has been developed by the studio who made Escape from Butcher Bay, and was based on a comic series with a cult following.  Unable to buy the game yet, I decided to look for all the information I could about it, and that brought me to GameTrailers.  They had just recently reviewed the game and had a lot of other videos about it ready to download. For two weeks I visited that site daily to try and get the latest information I could about games like Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of The Patriots, Halo 3, and Bioshock.

While the site would mirror most of the popular game trailers, it was top notch at their editing quality when it came to producing exclusive previews and reviews of new games. Also, GameTrailers had a lot of amazing and unique content creators.  I’m sure everyone will remember ScrewAttack’s partnership with the site, which brought in series like The Angry Video Game Nerd, but if there was any reason to watch GameTrailer’s content, it was for their Retrospectives.  Seriously, if you ever have a few free hours try checking out their retrospectives on Final Fantasy, Metroid, Metal Gear, or Star Wars. You won’t be disappointed.

Farewell, GameTrailers, you will be missed!

Final Fantasy IX Now on SmartPhones February 10, 2016

Posted by Maniac in Game News.
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Shortly after announcing it was on the way, Square Enix has released the PS1 Classic Final Fantasy IX on Android and iOS compatible devices.

Previously, Final Fantasy IX was only released on the PS1, but it was recently announced that the game will get a re-release on SmartPhones and the PC.  Personally, I’m hoping that it will eventually get ported to the PS4.

So how great is this game?  Well, the creator of the Final Fantasy franchise considers this game his personal favorite. Online reviewer Bennett the Sage considers this the second greatest PS1 game ever released (just behind Metal Gear Solid).

The game is currently being sold at a discounted price of $16.99 US, but it will be raised to a full price of $20.99 US on Feb 21st. So if you want it, get it now.

Final Fantasy IX is out now on PS1 and SmartPhones. It is coming soon to PC.