Tag: Gaming

So Atari is Back . . .

So Atari is Back . . .

Introduction

At E3 2017, a surprise guest was there, Atari. A company I haven’t heard from in a very, very long time. I know that they’ve been making small and unpopular games, but I was pretty surprised to hear them announcing a brand new console. They didn’t reveal much about it other than the design and fact that it was being dubbed, The Atari Box. To me, it sounds like a knock off of the recent Steam Box, and even sounds like it might work the same way. According to Atari CEO, Fred Chesnais, the console is supposed to be able to not only play current games, but also feature some classic Atari games Remastered for the new generation of gaming. However, I’m very skeptical about this.

Incase you weren’t aware, Atari has had a horrible track record in the gaming industry as of recent years. Most games they’ve published haven’t been that great, and they were even worse back when the 360 and PS3 were popular. Though they’ve published many good games in the past like DOOM, Ikaruga, even The Witcher. However, after they released Alone in the Dark and Alone in the Dark: Illumination, things started to go a bit down hill for them. Will this console be a comeback for Atari? Maybe. Lets take a look back what Atari has done up until now.

What is Atari?

Atari used to be the greatest gaming company from the early days of gaming. It’s golden years were from 1978-1981 when they released the Atari 2600, one of their most popular and legendary consoles. It was also around the time their two most popular games were released, Centipede and Asteroids. They were the best company in North America, and were getting popular with each passing day. Releasing games such as Tempest and Adventure. However, this didn’t last.

The Gaming Crash of 1983 came out and brought an unfortunate end to Atari’s monopoly on the gaming industry. Due to their greedy and cheap business practices, they began to pay the price for it. With their refusal of putting credits of their developers in their games and their attempt to make consoles cheaper, it soon led to the unholy release of ET and Pac-Man. The two worst Atari games ever made. This move soon brought the company to it’s weakest.

Their two recent consoles (the Atari 5200 and the Atari 1200XL) both were total flops, and soon crippled the company. They racked up nearly half a billion dollars worth in losses. The company CEO soon sold 5,000 of their shares, and it wasn’t long before Atari had been bought out by a guy named Jack Tramiel. For awhile, the company had gone silent, and soon after, SEGA and Nintendo became the new face of gaming. That is, until Atari snuck back into the game.

What happened to them after 1983?

Even after the crash, Atari still remained a company. They were sort of in the background while SEGA and Nintendo were in steady competition. To try and make a comeback, Atari released the Atari 7200. While the console did have some of it’s perks, it just couldn’t compete with the Nintendo Entertainment System and the SEGA Genesis, and ended up being a flop. Pretty soon, both SEGA and Nintendo made their own handheld consoles (the Nintendo Gameboy and SEGA Game Gear). Once again, Atari put their hat in the ringer with the Lynx I and Lynx II handheld consoles. However, Atari again wasn’t a match for the Gameboy and Game Gear.

Then the Bit Wars began!

Both SEGA and Nintendo weren’t just trying to be the best when it came to game, but they also wished to be the best in visuals. Nintendo had been behind SEGA when it came to bits, with the NES being only 8 Bit, and the SEGA Genesis being 16 Bit. As for one final try, Atari came out and surprised everyone with the Atari Jaguar. “The first ever 64 bit console!” or so they said. Everyone was super excited to see Atari’s new console, and couldn’t wait to see the new visuals. Unfortunately, their excitement was soon met with disappointment when they found that almost all the games weren’t 64 bit.

Many of the games ranged anywhere from 16 bit to 32 bit, which of course wasn’t at all what they promised. Sadly the console just ended up being no different from the competition. It’s even to this day still considered just a 32 bit console. Soon after, SEGA and Nintendo both released their own 64 bit consoles (the Nintendo 64 and the SEGA Dreamcast). Even after SEGA dropped out of the Console Wars and Sony and Microsoft entered the limelight, Atari still continued making consoles. Most of these were just remakes of their old consoles and didn’t get much popularity.

Pretty soon, the company fell into obscurity and had gone dark for awhile. Until E3 2017.

My Thoughts on their New Console

You know what, to be honest, I personally hope it goes well. This company has to be the most stubborn gaming company I’ve ever seen. No matter what has happen to them in recent years, they are still here and are still making content for gamers. I hope what they have for us in September will be able to compete with Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft. I hope their console does great when it comes out. I don’t have the highest hopes, but I will remain optimistic for them.

In Conclusion

We’ve seen the rise and fall of Atari. We’ve seen the good and the bad this company has done. We’ve seen every success and failure this company has produced, and I have a strong feeling that they’ve learned from their mistakes. They’re aware of the mistakes they made in the past, and they should know by now that they have to give it their all. If they wish to get back in the game, they need to earn their consumers’ trust. They need to prove to the gaming community that this new console is a must-have for all gamers.

We can only hope . . .

Works Cited

  1. Fulton, Steve. “Atari: The Golden Years — A History, 1978-1981.” Gamasutra: The Art & Business of Making Games, Gamasutra, 21 Aug. 2008, http://www.gamasutra.com/view/feature/132160/atari_the_golden_years__a_.php.
  2. jihedovsky. “New Atari Console Will Bring ‘Current Gaming Content’ As Well As Classic Titles.” TechHub, TechHub, 17 July 2017, http://www.tech-hub-magazine.com/2017/07/17/new-atari-console-will-bring-current-gaming-content-as-well-as-classic-titles/.         
  3. “The Great Video Game Crash of 1983 / Useful Notes.” TV Tropes, TV Tropes, tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/UsefulNotes/TheGreatVideoGameCrashOf1983?from=Main.TheGreatVideoGameCrashOf1983.   
  4. “From Vintage Video Game Consoles To Today.” TheGameConsole.com: Atari Video Game Consoles, TheGameConsole, http://www.thegameconsole.com/atari.html.  
  5. Rye, Rotten. “Bit Wars vs. Resolution Wars.” SuperNerdLand, SuperNerdLand, 20 May 2015, supernerdland.com/bit-wars-vs-resolution-wars/.                                                                                                                                                                                                                    

 

 

My Top 10 Games Of All Time

My Top 10 Games Of All Time

Introduction

Not trying to be cliché here or turn into another Watch Mojo, I simply wish to share my favorite games. Games that I felt good about playing. Games that had a powerful message to share. Games that left a big impact on my childhood. Games that I will still play even to this day. Games I feel you should one day give a try. Here’s my top 10 games of all time. Enjoy!

 

#10 – Call of Duty 2 : Big Red One

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This had to have been one of my favorite Call of Duty games of all time. Not only did it have great gameplay, but it had a brilliant story with excellent voice acting. The feeling of bonding with all of these soldiers, getting to know their stories, and seeing them fall before you is very impactful. Really shows you what kind of hell these men had gone through. A definite recommendation to any gamer or Call of Duty fan.

#9 – System Shock 2

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I remember viewing this game back in 2012 when I was watching one of my favorite YouTubers, Mutahar, playing it. It really caught my eye and I thought I’d give it a go one day. Not only is it cheap, but it’s a blast to play. One of the best survival horror games I’ve ever played. The graphic aren’t anything to brag about, but that doesn’t ruin the game for me. A must have for all PC gamers, and a classic to hang on to.

#8 – Myst

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This is how the game starts, you know absolutely nothing. You have no knowledge of who you are, where you are, why you’re here, and what your objective is. All of that you need to figure out by exploring the island, reading books, taking notes, solving puzzles, and reading maps. I love it! It does something not many games do anymore. Which makes it very unique. If you’re a fan of puzzles and exploration, you have to check this out.

#7 – Half-Life 2

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Another PC classic that left an impact on the entire gaming industry. It popularized the concept of physics in gaming, and was the best first-person-shooter of its time. Great gameplay and an excellent story. Always felt awesome smacking stuff with your crowbar. If you’ve been living under a rock and haven’t heard of this game, definitely give it a try.

#6 – Medal of Honor Allied Assault

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Before the rise of Call of Duty began, EA’s Medal of Honor dominated the PC gaming industry, and it was a big part of my childhood. It put you through missions based on actual events that took place during WW2. You even played undercover for the OSS trying to sabotage German U-Boats and other devices. You even got to fight alongside the French Resistance with the leader to destroy a powerful German Tiger Tank. An awesome classic to give a try.

#5 – Borderlands 2

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So many guns!! I have honestly never heard of any game that out gun Borderlands 2. Aside from the game’s mass abundance of guns, this game also has some awesome gameplay along with a very well made story. If you ever get this game, be sure to play it with friends. It is essential, or you’ll get bored pretty quick. If you’re a fan of killing psychos, monsters, badass enemies, and collecting guns, then this is the game for you!

#4 – Far Cry 3 

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“Did I ever tell you the definition of insanity?” That’s exactly what this game is to play. It really does show the break down of the human through the game’s insane narrative. The basic concept is this, you’re stuck on a group of small islands in the pacific ocean and you’re being hunted by two insane drug lords and slave traders. You’re only goal is to survive by any means. It is an exhilarating rollercoaster ride that’ll keep you on the edge of your seat. Also, Vass Montenegro is amazing in this game.

#3 – Halo 3

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Many of you probably expected this game to show up on this list eventually, and why wouldn’t it? This is probably the greatest Halo game in the entire series. No game ever came close to this popularity. It was the most anticipated title and the most successful. From the gameplay, to the visuals, and even to the story, this game scored on all fronts. The best Halo game in the entire series, in my opinion. Check this one out!

#2 – Left 4 Dead 2

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There is no other zombie game out there that can top the style and gameplay of Left 4 Dead 2. Nor is there any other zombie would play. This game is one of the best co-op games I’ve ever played, and I still to this day continue to play. Whether it would be for PC, PlayStation, or Xbox, this game is a spectacular blood-fest to behold. If you love killing zombies in the best and most intense way possible, then I recommend you pick up this masterpiece.

#1 – The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

Skyrim

This was bound to be my top choice. Skyrim does the one thing not many RPG games do anymore. Give you full and total freedom to do whatever you absolutely want. You could go evil, or be the hero. You can be a vigilante, or be a law abiding citizen. You can live in a home, or live a life of adventure. You can be a vampire, or a werewolf. You can be a mage, or a knight. There a no limits (aside from the boundaries of the world) to what you can do. It’s your game, so why not go truly make it yours!

Well, that’s my list! What are your favorite video games?

RANT: Supply Drops in Call of Duty WW2

RANT: Supply Drops in Call of Duty WW2

NOTICE: Just wanted to let you guys know from here on out I will be posting random rants about certain topics on my blog. They’ll usually be short paragraphs of me simply arguing about something that “grinds my gears”. It won’t be like my other blog posts. Just short, sweet and to the point. Enjoy, and thanks again for the support!

As we should’ve all known by now, Call of Duty WW2 is indeed getting supply drops in the multiplayer. It was inevitable. However, its what there doing with it that has me furious at Sledgehammer. First off, Michael Condrey has stated that these Supply Drops will be purely cosmetic and nothing more. This is bullshit, pardon my French. We’ve seen this before in another now infamous Call of Duty game by the name of Modern Warfare Remastered. When Raven promised that the drops would be cosmetic only, and what happened? Weapon after weapon after weapon had been released. There’s now a total of over 10 new guns in the game.

Allow me to predict the future here, this won’t last. I’d say give it one to two months before Sledgehammer officially announces that they’ll be releasing, oh I don’t know, I’m guessing a new assault rifle, shotgun, and pistol. A month after that, they’ll announce a new update featuring a new sniper rifle this time, maybe even a new melee. At the end of the day, we won’t truly know until the game is released. All I can say is, gamers, look through every file this game has when it comes out. Find out if they’re hiding anything in the programming. I wanna know if my assumptions are correct.

Micro-Transactions Everywhere!

Micro-Transactions Everywhere!

Introduction

Tonight is the night! You finally decide to treat yourself after a long and rough week of work. You recently got your paycheck, you’ve cashed it in, and you’ve now got some spending money to buy you a nice dinner. No microwaved ramen tonight, nope, you’re going to get a nice steak dinner from BLT Steak. You get there around 7 PM, grab yourself a seat, order your meal, and patiently wait for your food to come. Your mouth is watering as you continue waiting, tapping your feet in excitement. The thought of that sweet juicy taste makes your stomach rumble, and after a few minutes, there it is. A raw steak on your plate with no sides. Your body freezes, and you suddenly become confused. You turn to the waiter and ask him what’s going on. He looks at you saying, “Oh, I’m sorry, sir. You wanted your steak cooked?”. You look at him mind-boggled, “Of course I did!” you say to him. “Oh, well I’m afraid you’ll need to pay a $10 fee to cook it, and if you want the sides that come with the dish, that’ll be an extra $5 fee for each.”

Imagine that for a moment, a world of micro-transactions. No longer can you buy an entire car, or an entire house, an entire book. If you wish to get the full experience, you must pay small fees to get the rest of your product. This is a terrifying reality that we’re entering. Hell, we’re already there. With game after game now being released with micro-transactions. Full priced $60 games being given this unholy treatment. This greedy practice has been going on for decades. Since the digital age of gaming, and it’s getting worse every year. From Deus Ex Mankind Divided, to Destiny, to Halo 5, and now Middle-Earth: Shadow of War. Let’s discuss this.

Middle-Earth: Shadow of War

The most infamous story out right now is Warner Bro’s inclusion of micro-transactions in the upcoming Middle-Earth Shadow of War. This feature will be included in the game’s Nemesis System. The system will allow players to purchase war chests that contains more orcs to help build their army, and even Training Orders, which can help level up their orcs and boost XP. Now, here’s the thing, I wouldn’t be so upset about this if it weren’t for one thing, this game is NOT an online game. Yep, it’s a single player, open-world, roleplaying game that has no option of playing online.

Not only that, but this game will also have the infamous two different in-game currencies. You know what I’m talking about, like how nearly all free-to-play mobile games have a gold currency and a diamond currency. This game will feature Mirian and Gold. Mirian you can earn through playing the game, and Gold you will most likely have to buy through different options like $0.99, $9.99, $49.99, and almost definitely $99.99. Which will probably be labeled as “Best Value!”. Warner Bros has published some great games in the past. Games like The Witcher 3, the Batman games, and even Mortal Kombat X. It’s a shame to see the company making greedy decisions like this.

Deus Ex Mankind Divided

I might be wrong, but as far as I’m concerned, this is the patient zero when it comes to single player games being given micro-transactions. The game offered in-game currency packs ranging from 1,000 – 15,000 Credits. The prices range from $0.99 – $9.99. They also offer you Praxis Kit Packs, Chipsets for Breach, and Weapon Packs. These are just little packs that will help make life easier in the Campaign and Breach. Now, unlike most micro-transactions, these are one-time use. Meaning if already purchased a weapon pack and wanted to buy it again for another save, you couldn’t do it. Since you already bought it for your last play-through.

The one thing that made me happy about this though, was the fact that Eidos Montreal didn’t seem to like the idea of micro-transactions in their game. Knowing they couldn’t get rid of them, they did however make it easy for players to make it through the game without being tempted into buying them. The fault lies with Square Enix on this one. Though the game did come with micro-transactions, I’m just glad Eidos was able to make it fair for all players to play.

Call of Duty

There was no way in hell that I was going to miss this one. This franchise has become very infamous for their disgusting practices with micro-transactions. This ugly trend began back in Black Ops 2, when the game came out with different colored camos you could purchase from the in-game store. The prices for these ranged from $0.99 – $1.99. Not the greatest, but I was happy it was just cosmetics. Then things got crazy when the infamous Call of Duty Ghosts was released. You thought Black Ops 2 was bad? This game had skin packs, character packs, weapon packs, and even voice packs. There are more micro-transactions in this game than any other game I’ve seen. A grand total of 78 options to purchase. Wow.

However, that isn’t even the worst of it all. Advanced Warfare launches in 2014. The first Call of Duty game to officially feature a loot system. The dreaded Supply Drops are born. There are two kinds of Supply Drops in this game; Common and Rare. Common Drops come with three items and will only give you common items with the very slight chance of a rare item, and Rare Drops come with three items that will give rare and common items. The rarity of these items range from Common, Rare, Legendary, and Epic. This system has been with COD ever since. From Advanced Warfare, to Black Ops 3, to Infinite Warfare, and even to Modern Warfare Remastered. It’s just sad to see.

The Solution

Like I’ve stated before, the best way to stop these ugly practices from continuing is by completely refusing to purchase this content. If the entire gaming community stands up and demands the removal of micro-transactions in $60 games, then our voices will be heard, and the gaming industry just might change their minds. That’s the only way we can successfully put an end to this disgusting trend.

In Conclusion

There is a major difference between micro-transactions in $60 games versus micro-transactions in Free-To-Play games. Some Free-To-Play games need them in-order to keep their game alive. No MMO can continue to thrive without them. Some good examples are Warframe, Team Fortress 2, and World of Tanks. When you have them in a $60 game, that’s where I get angry. When I pay full price for a game, I expect to be getting the full game. Not bits and pieces that I have to unlock by paying for small extra fees. That’s insane.

It is our choice to decide whether or not micro-transactions in gaming is okay. Much like how it’s our choice to purchase these small fees. We don’t have to purchase these, at least until the game starts tempting us. If this trend doesn’t end, I fear that another Game Crash may come in the near future. Hopefully things will change soon.

Works Cite

  1. Osborn, Alex. “Middle-Earth: Shadow of War’s Nemesis System Will Have Microtransactions.” IGN, IGN, 5 Aug. 2017, http://www.ign.com/articles/2017/08/06/middle-earth-shadow-of-wars-nemesis-system-will-have-microtransactions.                   
  2. 24/08/2016, Wesley Yin-Poole Published. “Deus Ex: Mankind Divided’s Annoying Microtransactions in the Spotlight.” Eurogamer.net, Eurogamer, 24 Aug. 2016, http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2016-08-24-deus-ex-mankind-divideds-annoying-microtransactions-in-the-spotlight.
  3. Jacques, John. “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered Gets Microtransactions.” Game Rant, Game Rant, 14 Dec. 2016, gamerant.com/call-of-duty-modern-warfare-remastered-microtransactions-101/.