Gaming

I remember being shocked to hear the word "shit" in "Final Fantasy VII" once upon a time, and needless to say, things have changed. Most mainstream M-rated video games these days should be packaged with a bar of soap to wash their mouths out with. Despite this, some games let their "f**k" flag fly so high that people can't help but take notice, even the people at The Guinness Book of World Records.

When I was a kid I use to sit and think about what would happen if some of my heroes battled it out for world domination. A few years back I got the answer when “Freddy Vs. Jason” came out. But now the question that has been on everyone's mind since the dawn of the cold war will finally be answered. What would happen if Stalin had to battle aliens? Ladies and gentlemen I present to you the first release by independent publishing label Mezmer Games, “Stalin vs. Martians”.

"Call of Duty 5: World at War" is one of those games that has eluded me since I first purchased my 360. My stoner roommate wanted me to buy it, and all of my friends that play games online have at one time or another asked me if I have it. As expressed on the podcast, hype tends to affect me a great deal when making purchasing and viewing decisions, but I can eventually broken down with the right sell, especially if "more nazi zombies" are part of that sell:

Generally, I would shy away from posting other people's reviews, but "MadWorld" is a special case. You see, it was only released for that system I love to play at a friends house but can't convince myself that it's worth buying, despite my desire to perfect my balancing on a plastic platform skills. Since its release a few days ago, the mega-ultraviolent beat-em-up "MadWorld" has seemed to live up to the hype.

Last week, the "Bioshock 2" hype train officially left the station with the unveiling of There's Something in the Sea, an interactive collection of news clippings, photos, and other teasers for the upcoming game. This week, we get another sneak peak at some art from the upcoming game via the april cover of Game Informer magazine.


Big sis, little sis

Over the years, "Above the Influence," the propaganda wing of the Office of National Drug Control Policy has taught me a lot. For example, I learned that if I smoke pot at a fast food drive through, I will run over a little girl on a pink tricycle. I've also learned that it's best not to sit on the couch while smoking, because I'm bound to melt into the cushions, literally.

With online distribution becoming increasingly viable for indie games, we're seeing all sorts of wacky shit coming down the pipeline. The bar has been set in recent years by The Behemoth's "Alien Hominid," a Newgrounds flash classic turned console and XBLA hit. With relatively little overhead, studios and individuals can turn out fiercely original games regardless of how insane their premises may sound.

I'd be lying if I said that I didn't squeal a little bit when I turned on my 360 today and saw that the "WWE Legends of Wrestlemania" demo was available for download. I'd also be lying if I said that I didn't pace back and forth in my living room, counting down each percent increment as the download dragged on. When I was finally able to play through a little bit, I was left with some very strong impressions, for better or for worse.

The Good

The nostalgia is strong with this one!

Nowadays, nothing builds anticipation for a high profile game or movie quite like a flashy viral campaign. I would argue that viral campaigns work better at their most cryptic, but I'm certainly not averse to a little tease here and there of what I should expect from an upcoming release.