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In the 20-some-odd years I’ve been alive, I’ve had some high points and some low points. People and things have come and gone, I’ve changed (or at least, I hope I’ve changed) for better or worse and I’m not even halfway through my life. I’ve had a lot of things that stayed relatively constant: friends, family, existential dread. One of these constants is video games. That may sound silly to people who haven’t played video games. “Video games? You mean that kiddy shit?” I wouldn’t blame them, really. It’s hard to tell most people I play video games at my age without getting weird looks… and according to nearly everyone I talk to, I’m pretty young. My passion for games […]

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VRPlayin with the HTC Vive

I’m no stranger to VR. I’ve tried it a few times, the most notable of which was trying out Rez Infinite on PSVR at a friend’s place; I loved the original, and playing Rez Infinite in VR was nothing short of incredible. A little disorienting for sure, but an incredible experience nonetheless. So when a friend of mine suggested we […]

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The Volatile Power Of Nostalgia

As a child, everything is a novelty. With a miniscule attention span and little to no life experience, we ingested as much media as we could and all of it was the best thing ever. Cars that transform into robots, four exterminators busting ghosts, adventurers donning green tunics. Whenever one thinks of those wonderful things they grew up with, they’re awash with homesickness, a “sentimental yearning for the happiness of a former place of time.” This is the feeling of nostalgia; a mix of both happiness and sadness; a happy longing for the past and a sadness that it cannot be reclaimed. It’s a force that draws us towards things that bring back fond memories of our childhood. You know […]

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30 Years of Consoles, Abridged: Final Thoughts

A lot has changed in almost 35 years. Where consoles were once machines that could only play games, they have become something much more. Throughout the years, consoles evolved into machines that went from playing games to playing DVDs, to machines that could access the Internet, to machines that have every form of entertainment you could possibly want. The PS2 ushered in this new era of consoles, machines that could become your multimedia machines. While this was great for the living room, it may have been detrimental for gaming as a whole. Where a console’s selling point was once solely based on its library of games, it is now based on what services the consoles can provide the user. The […]

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30 Years of Consoles, Abridged: Who’s Next?

In Parts 1 and 2, I talked about what makes a console successful, past and present. To sum up, the most successful consoles had any combination of these 4 attributes: Convenience (apps, portability, etc.) Power (an attribute not seen before the current gen) Games (whether for first-party polish or third-party volume) Cost/Value (as it turns out, most people are apprehensive about spending a lot of money) Nintendo took the portability of a Nintendo DS, gave it console hardware, a sandbox style Zelda game and a new mainline Super Mario game in the same vein as Super Mario 64 and Super Mario Sunshine. They hit that convenience/first-party sweet spot and I have faith it will take them far. Sony has built […]

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30 Years of Consoles, Abridged: What’s Working?

We’ve just started 2018 and we’re knee-deep in the 8th generation of game consoles. Whatever a “generation” is at this point. But that will be discussed in due time. The PS4 is slaying the Xbox One in sales, due mostly to the Xbox One’s shaky press coverage before its reveal. Needing daily Internet checkups to ensure you were playing a legitimate copy of the game, purchased games being tied to your account (rendering the discs useless after initial purchase, effectively snuffing out the used game market), and their motion controller/camera supposedly “always watching,” it comes as no surprise that the Xbox team dropped the ball with their marketing. Its reveal didn’t help its case, either; many would say that the […]

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30 Years of Consoles, Abridged: What Worked?

Prior to the release of the Sega Dreamcast in 1998, game consoles were designed to do one thing: play games. You popped your cartridge into your black/brown/soon-to-be eggshell coloured console and turned it on. A splash screen of bright colours and catchy tunes played and you were in. Life was simpler back then. In 2017, people are building borderline supercomputers to play games at the highest graphical fidelity possible. To some, the strength of the machine is a huge determining factor when buying a console. But that didn’t matter in 1985. With only games to keep us entertained, console manufacturers like Nintendo and SEGA needed strong libraries of games to sell their consoles. The SEGA Master System had more powerful […]