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REVIEWS Evolution: Battle for Utopia Review
Be the captain of an expedition to a distant planet in a multi-genre game or you got your resource management chocolate in my RPG peanut butter!

Dark Souls II Review
[PC Version Update!] Sweet Dreams are made of these: Some of them want to abuse you; some of them want to be abused.
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PREVIEWS Skylanders Trap Team Preview
Don't worry, folks. Admiral Ackbar is all over this.
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NEW RELEASES The Amazing Spider-Man 2
Release date: 04/29/14

Bound by Flame
Release date: 05/09/14

Wolfenstein: The New Order
Release date: 05/20/14

Drakengard 3
Release date: 05/21/14


LATEST FEATURES Bandai Namco's Global Gamers Day Showcase
In Las Vegas, Ryan Bates and I poured through Bandai Namco's full catalogue of titles and learn what the publisher has in store this year.

The Gaming Charities at PAX East 2014
Pause your game and make a difference. Gamers can go beyond player two by helping many others with these charities.
 
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FEATURED VOXPOP maca2kx Metal Gear Solid was a watershed moment in gaming for me. The graphics, at the time, were phenomenal; the story was winding and engaging; the gameplay was sharp and not above breaking the fourth wall when appropriate. It’s one of the few titles where the number of times I’ve...

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It's Wiggly Cum Laude!
Posted on Thursday, July 12 2007 @ 01:00:35 Eastern

Big Brain Academy: Wii Degree (HonestGamers.com Staff Review)

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It's My Birthday!
Posted on Saturday, July 7 2007 @ 11:19:15 Eastern

I feel ancient. :)

Oh, and Live Earth just has to be on my birthday. Darn. However, I will be made up for it with an ice cream cake from the Chinatown Ice Cream Factory. Oh, lychee and mango, how I cherish thee. And a Korean BBQ buffet. Yum, yum. (Hmm... makes me look like an emotional eater. But I don't care, it's my birthday!)

So far, on my birthday:

2:30 am - 4:45 am: Play Twilight Princess.
4:45 am - 10:00 am: Sleepy Sleepy
10:00 am - 11:00 am: Watched Venus Williams make her come back to win her fourth Wimbledon as the lowest seedest ever (23) to win a major! She now joins the ranks of Martina Navritalova, Steffi Graf, and Billie Jean King.



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How The Magic Circle Protects Video Games
Posted on Tuesday, July 3 2007 @ 03:23:17 Eastern

"Video games are different because they are interactive."
"Movies are passive; video games are active."
"Video games are dangerous because people are actually performing violent acts, not just watching as an observer."

How many times have we heard these statements, these casually spoken sentences, from those who seek to severely restrict video games. Yet all of them ignore one crucial component: the magic circle. One core feature of playing - video games or otherwise - is that it occurs in a separate and self-contained sphere that encloses players in a spatiotemporal frame; that is, a frame that is either bounded by space or time, or both. This magic circle effectively isolates the game from the more "serious" tasks of daily living. For a sports game, this is usually the actual playing field: the baseball diamond, the Olympic stadium, the chessboard. There are sharp temporal boundaries as well, a beginning and an end that marks gameplay as a temporary interruption from daily life. It is within this closed world that games are primarily played.

The magic circle is far from being a phenomenon. When two puppies play, it is mutually understood between the two animals that though they are biting and tackling each other, in an actively aggressive mode, that they are not going for the kill. Even the temple or church is a sacred area in which religious ceremonies occur within that confined space, where worshippers practice some forms of behavior that is only appropriate for the duration of the ceremony. For video games, this space is confined by the actual ruleset governing them. That the rules are meant to be balanced and fair to all players - an idealistic and special world - separates the video game from the hardly fair and idealistic world that we all live in.

In fact, this element of fair play within the magic circle presents a serious issue of morals in players, especially online players who frequently deal with cheap tactics or immoral behavior. When certain players step out of bounds, or hack into the system to give themselves an advantage, it disrupts the agreed-upon conventions and rules by which the entire gaming community is held. Usually, moderators have to come in and resolve such abuse, but more often than not, this develops from the reactions of many more numerous players, taken as a whole, who desire justice against these "lawbreakers."

Thus, it is only under the rare occurence when people are unaware of the magic circle that problems occur. The magic circle is meant to serve as a hidden protective shield that supplies a safe and reliable gratification of human drives, but it breaks down when the players themselves are unaware of it. Believing that the reality of Doom extends to the reality of regular life is as dangerous as biting someone's ear off during a boxing match. This is the primary reason why children, many of whom have undeveloped lines of what is acceptable in a game as opposed to real life, are restricted to buying games.

However, interactive, violent, and active video games - like nearly all (if not all) forms of media - naturally exist in a bubble. Games naturally presuppose that players are consciously aware of the game's objectives and rules, and play, even in its most primitive sense, imply this intuitive understanding. Indeed, video games are pleasurable on the fundamental basis that they are make-believe. Thus, no matter how engrossing video games become, they are bound by the force that makes them engrossing in the first place.

Hey, the magic circle ain't magical for nothing.



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Wii Transform
Posted on Sunday, July 1 2007 @ 04:18:13 Eastern

If the Wii could become a transformer, I believe it would be a very user-friendly robot. And you could control him (her?) (it?!) comfortably between three and eight feet. Oh, Wiimote recommendations for the sensor bar, I hardly knew I needed ye.read more...

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Why 'Addiction' Is The Wrong Word
Posted on Tuesday, June 26 2007 @ 00:10:36 Eastern

(Let\'s keep this short and sweet.)

PASSION. Somehow, this word is abandoned for the more fearful word: ADDICTION. Could it possibly be that when someone sacrifices much of their livelihood towards the pursuit of success ...   read more...

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Pet Alien (Staff Review)
Posted on Tuesday, June 19 2007 @ 15:31:20 Eastern

Pet Alien (DS) - HonestGamers.com Staff Review

Put to sleep.

...   read more...

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I Need A Safe For My Memory Cards
Posted on Saturday, June 16 2007 @ 07:37:40 Eastern

Take my games. Take my console. Hey, take my pride as a male. But that will never compare to someone taking my memory cards. Sure, I could just get another one for $20 bucks and upload some game save off of GameFAQs, but that's my blood ...   read more...

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Fire Fire Revolution
Posted on Wednesday, June 6 2007 @ 06:28:21 Eastern

I actually heard of Fire Fire Revolution many months before GameSpot posted a sidebar article on it, but the idea of having real-life consequences for video games is an intruiging yet dangerous one. Would you play Counter-Strike if you were given ...   read more...

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Let's Salsa!
Posted on Tuesday, June 5 2007 @ 01:36:26 Eastern

I think I may have seen everything now.

...   read more...

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The Red Star (Review)
Posted on Friday, June 1 2007 @ 18:09:05 Eastern

There's R-Type in my Final Fight! (Staff Review @ HonestGamers.com)

...   read more...

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