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The Current Standard: Spin on Video Game Blogs
editorial | 01/05/07 | Chris Martin
Recently, in an interview with Ars Technica, Scott Henson, product unit manager for Microsoft\'s game technology group, made a statement regarding HD-DVD and Sony\'s defunct Betamax. Unfortunately for those of us who read only headlines and move on, the whole story is not being told. And now it\'s being spun by blogs with a hankering for a little more web traffic into a false statement. In this editorial, Chris Martin discusses the spin that blogs like to put on quotes and tries to understand just why blogs have no responsibility to report truth.
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Tony Hawk's Downhill Jam Review
game: Tony hawk's Downhill Jam
review | 12/23/06 | Matt James
Tony Hawk\'s Downhill Jam is sort of like a THPS lite, but that doesn\'t make it a game you should avoid. Building on the old-school THPS timed gameplay style, Downhill Jam offers up some quality gameplay on the Nintendo DS. If you\'re looking for something a little less intense than THUG or Project 8 for your daily commute or li\'l skater-in-training, the you could do worse than grabbing Downhill Jam. Check out Matt\'s review for the details.
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Gears of War Review
game: Gears of War
review | 12/19/06 | Chris Martin
The Xbox 360 needed a killer app to help counteract the release of both the PS3 and the Nintendo Wii, a game that would make their year-old system more appealing to potential Christmas shoppers. Well, Epic delivered with Gears of War, one of the best games to ever grace a game system. Even after the shiny new gleam has worn off, Gears of War continues to amaze, and promises to be a lasting online and offline hit for some time to come. Between Gears of War and Halo, Microsoft is holding some intellectual properties that will sell consoles, and you better bet that they know it.
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Return of a Legend - The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess Review
game: The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess
review | 12/09/06 | George Holomshek
The Wii has burst onto the scene this Fall every bit as popular as some imagined. Its success is due, in part, to a single title that many Nintendo fans have been eager to play: The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess has been re-tooled from its Gamecube origins for the Wii\'s unique controller and brawnier hardware. The result is a launch title of virtually unparalleled quality. Is Twilight Princess all that we hoped it would be? Our man George is mighty impressed. Check out his review for the details.
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Brigade E5: New Jagged Union Review
game: Brigade E5: New Jagged Union
review | 12/05/06 | Jason Perkins
Attempting to capitalize on the void left by the \'90s classic Jagged Alliance, Brigade E5: New Jagged Union brings mercenary strategy back to the PC. Sadly, with a poor graphics engine, buggy gameplay, and portions of the dialog that someone forgot to translate from the original Russian during the English conversion of the game, Brigade is a train wreck. The mulitplayer isn\'t functional and the game will sometimes miss event triggers after you beat a mission. Solid it concept, sluggish in execution, you\'ll want to avoid Jagged Union until patches make it playable.
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Company of Heroes Review
game: Company of Heroes
review | 11/04/06 | Sean Hilliard
Best RTS of all time? After sending our strategy freak Sean Hiliard into the battlefield, he realized that Company of Heroes is all that and a bag of potato chips. It might just be the best real-time strategy game of all time, and it is without a doubt the best strategy game of 2006. Get off your footlocker soldier! We have the reasons why you won\'t want to miss this one, private.
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Online Negotiation Games by Zap Dramatic
review | 10/30/06 | Laurie Taylor
Zap Dramatic makes a unique series of games built around negotiating. In games such as \"The Raise\" and \"The Mediator,\" players must navigate through a complex social web, made more realistic by a touch of unpredictability and predictable limitations. Dialogue-oriented games are occasionally popular (Phoenix Wright Ace Attorney, for example), but often suffer from the good/bad, light side/dark side, oversimplification of games like Fable or Knights of the Old Republic. Laurie takes a look at some of the Zap Dramatic offerings in this group review.
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Just Cause Review
game: Just Cause
review | 10/25/06 | Sean Hilliard
You are a rugged, sexy operative ordered to take down a whole country, and no matter how many times you have to jump out of that airplane, hijack that automobile, or jump through the blades of a moving helicopter you\'re going to kill that guy, or save that guy, or find that item! In Just Cause, regime change is the goal, and it\'s up to you, your trusty parachute, and a grappling hook to revolutionize a whole South American state. But before you go getting all hopped up on your School of the Americas delusions of grandeur, be sure to check Sean\'s review. Otherwise, don\'t blame us for the harsh realization that even parachutes can\'t make repetitive mission-based infiltration worth playing...
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Why Gamers Have No Eyes
editorial | 10/24/06 | Aaron Stanton
The National Summit on Video Games, Youth and Public Policy took place this weekend. Researchers from around the country attended to discuss everything from violent media to the legality of government regulation of game ratings. It was sponsored by one of the game industry\'s most politically powerful critics, the National Institute on Media and the Family, which has consistently given the game industry poor marks when it comes to video games and violence. But did anyone from the game media bother to show up? Nope. Aaron Stanton was the lone game journalist at an event that could have real impact on game legislation, and the lack of attention pissed him off. You should read more about it here.
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That Retro Review: ToeJam and Earl
game: ToeJam and Earl
feature | 10/13/06 | Chris Martin
Two of the most beloved aliens of all time - sorry E.T. - ToeJam and Earl have been through a lot together: two sequels, multiple planets, and a lot of tough criticism. But we cast all that aside and look to the past today with the original ToeJam and Earl. What made the game so great? The tunes? The attitude? The Coop play? Try all of the above. The funky beat-boxing aliens have had their fill of Earth, and so has Chris as he\'s guided Earl all the way to level 25, found all 10 spaceship pieces, and thrown tomatoes at Earthings until they pop in this week\'s That Retro Review!
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Going to the National Summit on Video Games, Youth and Public Policy
news | 10/11/06 | Aaron Stanton
The National Summit on Video Games, Youth and Policy is being held in Minnesota on October 20th and October 21st. The conference is sponsored by Iowa State University and the National Institute on Media and the Family, a group that\'s known for being critical of the game industry in the past. Will the event be hostile to pro-game journalists that have actively criticized the research of some of its speakers? Possibly. Are we going anyway? Absolutely. With a issues like The Truth in Video Game Ratings Act in Congress, I can\'t think of a better place for our industry\'s attention to fall.
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Test Drive Unlimited Review
game: Test Drive Unlimited
review | 09/30/06 | Chris Martin
Atari\'s Test Drive Unlimited brings some of the best and most mediocre that driving games have to offer. With loads of licensed vehicles and an innovative and fun online multiplayer, TDU is an interesting play for anyone into the driving genre. But some graphical glitches, physics-based wonkiness and repetitive game modes prevent it from being our most favorite. Get the well-rounded evaluation of Atari\'s latest driving simulator from Chris Martin, our resident race game expert.
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Doom For XBLA Review
game: Doom
review | 09/30/06 | Tristan Mayshark
id\'s seminal classic is a surprise Xbox Live Arcade release for the Xbox 360. Demons from Hell on Mars and throbbing metal midi tracks help you party like it\'s 1994 (except this time around our pings are way better). Though it has not changed significantly from the version that debuted 13 years ago, it remains a worthwhile purchase for FPS junkies and casual gamers alike. Get the full story from our man, Tristan.
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First Blu-Ray Drives Won't Play Blu-Ray?
news | 08/13/06 | Chris Martin
It\'s been widely misreported all over the internet that the \"First Blu-Ray drives won\'t play Blu-ray.\" While it\'s true that the first Blu-Ray drives in Australia won\'t play Blu-Ray discs, it\'s mainly due to the limited Blu-Ray player software that currenly only shows up in Sony\'s VAIO. So no, it\'s not a worldwide issue, and neither is it a problem for the new Sony hardware.
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And I Start Thinking of Killing Kombies: One Gamer's Struggle for Daily Survival
game: Dead Rising
editorial | 08/02/06 | Chris Martin
\"In Dead Rising, coming August 8th for the Xbox 360 game console, players follow the efforts of ambitious photojournalist Frank West as he investigates the strange happenings at the Willamette Parkview Mall only to find that more than just the Chinese food in the Food Court has been rotting...\" We\'re so happy for a return of the zombie game that we tied Chris to his computer chair with bailing wire (left over from the last time a gamer defected) and forced him to write about what makes a zombie a zombie. By the end of the three-day period Chris, a little pale from lack of food, fell over trying to lunge at us with ominous moans. He bit a big chunk out of Aaron\'s arm as he tried to post this.

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The cake is a lie.