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How To Get Podcasts on Your Xbox 360
game: Xbox 360
how-to | 11/20/05 | Shawn Rider
The Xbox 360 is a powerful media machine, in addition to being a powerful gaming machine. And with all of the new capabilities, we\'re sure to see a lot of fun and funky uses. So we thought we\'d kick off the interesting Xbox 360 media-centered ideas with this quick article about how to listen to podcasts while you\'re gaming. Now you don\'t have to make a choice between the evening news and gaming with your long-distance friends on XBL. And now you can listen to Val review games while you play them. How cool is that? Check it out here.
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How To Maximize the Media with the Xbox 360
game: Xbox 360
how-to | 11/20/05 | Shawn Rider
The Xbox is amazing for a lot of reasons, not the least of which is a whole raft of new multimedia capabilities. Now all media playback is handled by the system, which means you can overlay your custom soundtrack on any game you\'d like. Connect to other PCs on your home network, or to portable devices including PSP and iPod, and you can stream music right into your games. And if you have a PC with Windows Media Center Edition 2005, then the Xbox 360 becomes the hub of your media life: live television, recorded shows, and playback of videos from your PC are just some of the features in the new Xbox 360.
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I Like Watching You: Playing with Privacy in the Gaming Age
editorial | 11/18/05 | Aaron Stanton
The Massachusetts Institute of Technology has developed a campus-wide Wi-Fi service that can track when and where you connect, recording your location for up to 12 hours. It could be the next best thing in multiplayer game matching (find a PSP or DS user nearby to hook up a game), but with cities like San Fransisco and Philadelphia already looking into municipal broadband projects, this sort of technology also raises some serious ethical questions. And after recent news of World of Warcraft\'s \"Warden\" program spying on your computer we\'re worried about these issues coming directly to videogames. Sony\'s massive blowout with spyware, rootkits, and a public backlash that will no doubt severely wound the company, will also affect in some tangential way (at best) PlayStation 3 development and launch. Aaron takes a look at these issues and probes the changing face of your gaming privacy.
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Crash Tag Team Racing Review
game: Crash Tag Team Racing
review | 11/17/05 | Matt James
Crash Tag Team Racing comes a year after the old Double-Dash did in the venerable Mario Kart on Gamecube and double-dashed the hopes of many a fan. But don\'t be fooled by the immediate resemblance here: Crash Tag Team Racing might look like a Double-Dash rip-off, but in reality it has much more to offer. Combining a quality Crash platformer with zany, fast-paced racing action, Crash Tag Team Racing is unlike any other game we\'ve played. Still not convinced? OK, then, two words: Ninja Penguins. \'Nuff said. Check Matt\'s review here.
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Spyro: Shadow Legacy
game: Spyro: Shadow Legacy
review | 11/17/05 | Laurie Taylor
Spyro: Shadow Realm is more than a little shady. In fact, it\'s all we can do to keep from making a dragon-doo joke. But this one is for the kids, so let\'s keep it clean. Spyro: Shadow Legacy is a deeply flawed game, with unfinished, glitchy gameplay. It doesn\'t take long for the game to get repetitive, and the fact that half of the game is just the first half with a different color palette doesn\'t help. Check Laurie\'s review for the lowdown on Spyro: Shadow Legacy.
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Tony Hawk's American Wasteland Review
game: Tony Hawk's American Wasteland
review | 11/16/05 | Jeremy Kauffman
Tony Hawk\'s American Wasteland marks the third incarnation of the immensely popular series. Is it a worthy successor to THPS and THUG? Well, do BMX bikes and the French sport of freestyle walking, aka Le Parkour, turn you on? They should. And does a seamless recreation of Los Angeles help? It might. And what about online multiplayer for Xbox owners? It\'s about time. Veteran skate punk, Jeremy, put thumb to controller to give you this review.
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Interview: The Story Behind Amped 3
game: Amped 3
interview | 11/16/05 | Aaron Stanton
The Xbox 360 is only days away from making its way into your home (if you\'re lucky), and the development community is collectively holding their breaths. In the last minutes before the first reviews begin showing up for games on Microsoft\'s new system, there\'s just a little bit of time for developers to say a word or two about their games before everyone gets a go at them. We take a moment to talk with Indie Built\'s Aaron Connors, Amped 3\'s Story Director, about one of the 360\'s first sports titles.
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Twoplayer Comic: Did You Say Something?
comic | 11/15/05 | Aaron Stanton
Sometimes articles rub people the wrong way. Sometimes somebody criticises a beloved video game, or says the wrong thing in an editorial about Nintendo. Sometimes, though, they just mention the fact that they\'re a girl that happens to play games. This week\'s twoplayer comic is partially in response to the reader reaction we got from an article we published last week called, A Look Behind Alice: A Woman\'s Reason for Gaming. The character profile of a casual gamer was received with mixed results. Did You Say Something? is this week\'s twoplayer comic.

Twoplayer game comics are published weekly at http://comics.gamesfirst.com.
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Magna Carta: Tears of Blood Review
game: Magna Carta: Tears of Blood
review | 11/15/05 | Amanda Bateman
No, we\'re not talking about a legal document limiting the power of English monarchs in the year of 1215 (But, if you can make a fun videogame about that, we\'d love to see it!). Atlus and Softmax\'s Magna Carta: Tears of Blood is a new roleplaying game for the PS2 that has made its way from Korea to Japan, and is now on its way to make a new niche in the United States. Unlike the real Magna Carta, this game is no guarantee of increased rights for the aristocracy, but it\'s still OK with us. Get Amanda\'s take on it right here.
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Redefine the Grind: Sociolotron and the Atypical Gamer (Part Two)
game: Sociolotron
feature | 11/14/05 | Shawn Rider
Last week we published the first part of Shawn\'s in-depth look at the twisted world of Sociolotron. Billed as the ultimate adult MMORPG, Sociolotron features unprecedented levels of player freedom and sexual gameplay. But Shawn found that, much like novels by the Marquis de Sade, the bizarro sex quickly becomes banal and the real meat of the game lies in the ways players build their characters and live out alternative lives within the game. In Part Two of his feature, Shawn talks to senior citizen male prostitutes, lesbian lovers, and a wheelchair-bound mafioso who commands four in-game sex slaves. He also talks to Patrick Lagny, who has created Sociolotron almost single-handedly, about what motivates him to make such a game.

Needless to say, this article features explicit language and frank descriptions of adult and sexual themes. Reader discretion is advised.
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DOFUS Review
game: DOFUS
review | 11/14/05 | Chris Galbraith
Every once in awhile, a game comes along with solid gameplay and a lot to appreciate, but a very unfortunate name. I\'m remembering Seaman most specifically here. Although maybe if you say it with a native French accent, there is lesspotential for confustion. Afterall it\'s only a small twist of syllable pronounciation that separates DOFUS from a decidedly less attractive moniker. Regardless, DOFUS has a lot to offer: Tactics style RPG gameplay mixed with MMO elements all packaged in an atractive, cartoony package. With an international following and a development team dedicated to iterative improvements, DOFUS is a promising indy game project. Check out Chris Galbraith\'s review, available here.
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Civilization IV Review
game: Civilization IV
review | 11/13/05 | George Holomshek
Sid Meier\'s Civilization IV is the latest in one of the most venerable game series ever created. Civilization is an amazing game, and the latest incarnation proves that solid gameplay withstands the ages. Even so, the improvements this time around make Civilization a bit more approachable while offering die-hard fans a bit more of a streamlined strategy experience. Get the full story from George, right here.
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Microsoft Releases Xbox 360 Backwards Compatibility List
game: Xbox 360
news | 11/12/05 | Aaron Stanton
Microsoft has released an initial list of Xbox games that will be supported for emulation on Xbox 360. We know Halo and Halo 2 will be featured (and it\'s rumored that they will sport some kind of extra buffs and/or graphical polish), but what else can we expect? Just to save you some time and alleviate your worries, we\'re glad to confirm the following titles are on the supported games list: Barbie Horse Adventures: Wild Horse Rescue, Circus Maximus, BMX XXX, and the entire Cabela\'s Xbox catalog. So you\'re pretty much covered.
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GF! Weekly Wrap-Up Podcast #11
podcast | 11/11/05 | Val Townsend
Here it is, another episode of the GamesFirst! Weekly Wrap-Up. This week Val takes a look at the latest news stories, as well as reviews of Shadow of the Colossus for PS2 and GameTap, the new broadband gaming service for PC. She also has a preview of the very intriguing second-generation Xbox 360 title, Crackdown, which comes from the creator of the original GTA and Lemmings. You know you want it, and it\'s right here.
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Lost Garden Challenges Conventional Wisdom of Game Industry
news | 11/11/05 | Shawn Rider
Danc from Lost Garden ruffled a lot of feathers with his article about Nintendo\'s Revolution controller a couple months ago (as did all the greatest gaming websites). Now he\'s come out again with another sharp bit of criticism and advice for the industry: Broaden your horizons, or remain a niche form of entertainment. It\'s easy to forget about how few gamers there really are when we put ourselves into communities where everyone shares our interests. Why is there such a crisis about getting women involved in gaming? Because ultimately, the games industry cannot survive if it does not diversify, both in the people who make games and in the people who play games. Danc\'s article is an absolute must-read for anyone who truly loves games.
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