Category Archives: Featured Games

A bi-monthly series that looks back and analyzes noteworthy games.

Indie Game Spotlight: Gateways, Lone Survivor, Papers Please

Indie Game Spotlight

This week I wanna do something a little different. Over the past few weeks, I’ve played a lot of indie games to quell the drought of new releases in the early months of the year. In particular, there were three games that deserve attention and rather than split them up into separate articles I figured it made more sense to talk about them all at once especially with the Steam and GOG.com summer sales in full swing. The three games are Gateways, Lone Survivor and Papers, Please. Read the rest of this entry

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Featured Game: Resident Evil 6

Oh how times have changed. A decade ago, the Resident Evil series meant something completely different to the common gamer. Capcom’s blockbuster franchise was both the pioneer and single-largest bastion of the survival horror genre. Resident Evil 6 strays as far as it conceivably could from what the Resident Evil games once stood for but it would be false to suggest that this in an entirely bad thing.

Insert (heh) your Giraffe-blowjob jokes here.

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Featured Game: BioShock

2007 will be remembered for many things as far as video games are concerned. It was a year that saw the release of Halo 3 and Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, two of the most influential first-person shooters ever made. Both of these games emphasized online multiplayer and though they may have defined the first-person shooter in the years to come, a little game studio called Irrational Game (known then as 2K Boston) perfected the first-person shooter with BioShock.

Bioshock Wallpaper

Is a gamer not entitled to the value of his dollar?

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Featured Game: Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker

The Metal Gear Solid series ended with Metal Gear Solid 4, except that it didn’t. While Solid Snake’s story is over, there are plenty of gaps in Big Boss’ life to fill and this is exactly what Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker sets out to accomplish. After a dismal wreck of a previous game, Peace Walker is a revitalizing breath of fresh air. It continues Big Boss’ story and advances his character in a way that brings him closer to the antagonistic figure of Metal Gear.

Snake’s about to give you a “peace” of his mind. Image Credit: Cheat Code Central.

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Featured Game: Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots

There’s nothing wrong with looking back at the past but there are many problems with bringing the past forward to the future. Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots is a nostalgic love letter to diehard fans of the series, but it’s so focused on the past that it fails to contribute anything meaningful. Playing Metal Gear Solid 4 is comparable to receiving a letter from your high-school crush, sure it’s nice to revisit fond memories but it won’t enrich or advance your life.

The Metal Gear Solid series is about to be terminated. Image Credit: Deviant Art

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Featured Game: Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater

After Metal Gear Solid 2, the fanbase was split into two; supporters and opposers. This marked the beginning of a game called Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater. While it may have been successful, not everyone was happy with Metal Gear Solid 2. Fans were expecting a more traditional story and the philosophical meta-narrative wasn’t for everyone. Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater is the ultimate result of this reaction and is not only the greatest game in the Metal Gear Solid series, it’s one of the best games of the previous decade.

In another life, Big Boss may have been a pirate. Image Credit: Metal Gear Wikia.

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Featured Game: Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty

Metal Gear Solid was one of the best selling games on the Playstation, selling over six million copies worldwide. It was inevitable that it would get a sequel. The second installment of the Metal Gear Solid series was planned to be released for Sony’s upcoming gaming console, the Playstation 2. Metal Gear Solid 2 is one of the most ambitious video game sequels ever made. Video games have a tendency to play it safe, especially with sequels but Metal Gear Solid 2 defies expectations and takes an astonishing amount of risks. It’s the first ever postmodern video game and an early example of video games being art.

Snake is back, with a new lease on life an a glorious mullet. Image Credit: IGN.

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Featured Game: Metal Gear Solid

Nostalgia is a powerful thing. Maybe that’s why it’s so hard for me to make a single criticism of Metal Gear Solid. This kind of nostalgia is hardly unique to this game but to be fair, Metal Gear Solid is more than a nostalgia trip. It’s a legitimately great game that’s a classic in every sense of the word. It single-handedly popularized the stealth genre and was one the first video games to achieve the cinematic pedigree of a feature film. It spawned a massive franchise consisting of several games an millions of copies sold worldwide. The video game industry wasn’t the same after Metal Gear Solid. It’s influence is so far reaching that chances are that if you played a video in the last year, it was probably influenced by this game in some way.

MGS2 would go on to recreate this moment with horrifying results. Image Credit: Kotaku.

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Featured Game: Burnout Paradise

The opening notes of Guns N’ Roses “Paradise City” greet you at the main menu of Burnout Paradise. It’s a welcome introduction and a moment of gaming bliss that sets the tone for one the finest open-world racing games ever made. You’re then immediately flung into a tutorial and introduced to the most annoying video game character since Navi from Ocarina of Time. This is stumble out of the gate in what is an otherwise nearly flawless game. Burnout Paradise is quite simply one of the greatest open-world games ever made. It does for racing games what The Elder Scrolls did for fantasy games. If you have any inclination to play a racing game, you owe it to yourself to buy this right now.

Save yourself some time, stop reading this and buy this game already. Image Credit: forwallpaper

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Featured Game: Splinter Cell Conviction

The thing you have to understand is this, the Splinter Cell series that you knew is dead. During the five years that Splinter Cell: Conviction was in development, it was always going to go in a different direction from its predecessors. The Splinter Cell games are among the most popular stealth games ever made. Splinter Cell prominently featured realistic lighting effects and hiding in shadows as a central game mechanic. The first four games shared this commitment to a realistic depiction of espionage. However, Splinter Cell: Conviction is a dramatic departure from previous games. Despite these differences, Conviction is a fully satisfying experience.

For a man in his fifties, Sam Fisher sure is a spry fellow. Image Credit: shop.ubi.com

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