Gaming in NYC – Trick or Treat: Halloween Game Expo

Banner for the Trick or Treat Halloween Game Expo.Looking to start the Halloween fun early? How about the chance to try some awesome games? Well if you’re in NYC, you can have the best of both worlds. The Microsoft Office is hosting the Trick or Treat: Halloween Game Expo this Saturday, October 28th.

In celebration of all the local games coming out of NYC, the event will have over 100 games for attendees to play and a chance to speak with their developers. As an added bonus, attendees can participate in the costume contest. Local game developers in the NYC area also have the chance to submit their game to the expo.

I’m always looking for the latest and greatest games from New York’s indie scene. This felt like a great opportunity to meet some local developers. So, here’s your chance to do something fun this weekend. You can RSVP and buy your tickets for the event by clicking here. Read up on the rules for this family-friendly event and check out the list of registered games and developers.

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Wolfenstein: The New Order’s Best Moment Comes When It Calls Out America’s Hypocrisy

Wolfenstein
Wolfenstein’s best scene provides insight into the American mentality.

We all want to believe that we’re doing the right thing. However, our sense of right and wrong is never so clear-cut, which is something that Wolfenstein: The New Order perfectly illustrates with one scene in particular. I didn’t give Wolfenstein a chance when it first came out but after a sale, I felt a simplistic, mindless shooter would fill my time nicely. At least, that’s what I thought going in.

I was pleasantly surprised to find that the game was a lot more than just an alternate-history dystopian Nazi future. The game shows it’s understanding of America’s hypocrisy when it claims to fight for freedom. The scene in question is between our patriotic, Nazi-hating protagonist B.J. Blazkowicz and J (played wonderfully by Luke Burke), an obviously stoned and tortured guitarist. When B.J. picks up J’s guitar, we immediately get the sense that B.J. is no hero in his eyes.

Continue reading Wolfenstein: The New Order’s Best Moment Comes When It Calls Out America’s Hypocrisy

Dear Bluehole and PUBG, You Can’t Own a Genre

The logo for Player Unknown's Battlegrounds
PUBG wants to take on Epic in want seems like an unnecessary battle.

They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Unfortunately, when a big company like Epic decides to add the widely popular ‘Battle Royale’ genre from the game Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) to Fortnite, things get a little dicey. Bluehole, the creators of PUBG took offense to having their game copied, and even threatened legal action. But here’s the thing, you can’t copyright a genre, or at least you shouldn’t be able to. Continue reading Dear Bluehole and PUBG, You Can’t Own a Genre

Creator’s Intent: How We Are Meant to Play

Screenshot from Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice.
Hellblade delivers an exciting experience but misleads players along the way.

If you’re like me, then you play almost every game on normal. In my opinion, this is how the experience is meant to be enjoyed. Once I’m done, I venture into playing on a higher difficulty. While many consider themselves try-hards, I’m more inclined to finish a game the way the creator intended. The base experience has more to offer me than soul-crushing difficulty. Continue reading Creator’s Intent: How We Are Meant to Play

Renegade’s Radar: The Theif of Wishes

Screenshot from The Thief of Wishes

Taking inspiration from visual novels, as well as the storytelling of old fairy tales, The Thief of Wishes thrust players into a world where they can affect the narrative. You play as a young bookworm named Catharine, who is tasked with traversing between her world and nightmarish version of it to save those around her. As with other ‘Choose Your Own Adventure’ style games, the choices you make affect the ending. Continue reading Renegade’s Radar: The Theif of Wishes

Modern RPGs: Please Let Me Control the Squad

Picture of the characters from the RPG, Final Fantasy XV
Gladius, Prompto, and Ignis do want they want.

I have a grievance. My last two role-playing games (RPG) experiences – Final Fantasy XV and Mass Effect Andromeda – are not satisfying me. They are great games and fun to play but the action-oriented focus of both sacrifices a key aspect of the genre – control.

This loss of control doesn’t happen when I’m playing as a lone wolf type of character. In games like Fallout or the Witcher, you’re the all-powerful hero who can conquer anything by yourself. However, when you are given a party or squad, you’re their leader. You’re supposed to direct them on the battlefield and tell them what to do. Except, recent RPGs have made your party autonomous. They do as they please and you have little say.  Continue reading Modern RPGs: Please Let Me Control the Squad

Renegade’s Radar: 2017 Xbox One Exclusives You Might Be Interested In

An Xbox One with a controller on the side.
Are Xbox One fans looking forward to any of these games?

It’s fair to say that Sony’s PlayStation 4 catalog of exclusive games are killing it. So much so that they outshine anything on the Xbox One. It’s become pretty common at this point for gamers to say that Xbox One “has no games,” making for a worrisome statement. Even I’m guilty of making this assumption.

I personally blame Microsoft. Aside from a very bloated, tech-heavy reveal of Project Scorpio, everything is quite on the Xbox front. After doing some further digging, I’ve found a few gems from Microsoft that tells a different story about their exclusive lineup. Will it be enough to get fans excited? Continue reading Renegade’s Radar: 2017 Xbox One Exclusives You Might Be Interested In

Enhanced Consoles: Good or Bad Idea?

Sony's enhanced console, the PS4 Pro.
Are you upgrading for 4K resolution?
The PS4 Pro just dropped, and next year the Xbox One’s Scorpio is set to release. I don’t know how to feel about these enhanced consoles yet. They are cool in concept, but do they bring enough to the table to justify replacing your current machine? Continue reading Enhanced Consoles: Good or Bad Idea?

The Mass Effect Anomaly

A banner for Mass Effect Andromeda.
Mass Effect Andromeda is different, and sometimes not in a good way.

Mass Effect: Andromeda is a weird game. I’m not saying that I don’t enjoy it but playing it just feels strange, like something is off, and it’s not the animations. Keep in mind that I’ve only had enough time to complete a majority of the missions on planet EOS, so I still have a large portion of the game to get through. With that said, a few aspects stick out, shaping my early impressions of what the rest of it might be like.  Continue reading The Mass Effect Anomaly

Metroid Woes – Filling the Void

Promo art for Metroid Fusion.
Oh Metroid, where art thou?

Boy, do I have a lot of woes lately. Anyway, I’ve had a recent craving for a Metroid– style game, and Nintendo seems unwilling to fill that void. It’s actually a bit frustrating to be a fan of the red-headed stepchild of the Nintendo family. Whenever the company does acknowledge that the series exist, it’s more like they are telling you “Here you go, now shut the fuck up.”

My only solution to these Metroid withdraws is to rummage through indie catalogs for the best imitators out there. I do this about once every year. It’s actually quite surprising how many of these developers are making amazing metroidvania games. Continue reading Metroid Woes – Filling the Void

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