Tag Archives: sci-fi

Suggestions For Starting Mobile Suit Gundam

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For the last few months I’ve been watching a ton of Mobile Suit Gundam anime, and I think I’ve reached a point where I can at least put down a small collection of tips for anyone else thinking about getting into it or just taking a glance at it.

Mainly I’ve been watching different parts of the “Universal Century” Gundam shows, which if you don’t know form the main timeline around which the franchise was originally started. There are other shows taking place in their own continuities. I think this guide from Anime News Network is a good glance at the entire franchise, but it’s slightly outdated since a few more UC properties have come out since it was published, and I want to go over those a little bit. Continue reading

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Titanfall 2 vs Infinite Warfare

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All the reviews for Titanfall 2 have probably told you how good the campaign is. If you’ve slept on it, I’ll go ahead and tell you it ranks among the best shooter campaigns of recent years. Just coming off of it, it has me thinking about Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, for which I’m fairly optimistic. I probably won’t be able to play Infinite Warfare for a little while though. Continue reading

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Star Wars And The Nostalgia-Based Films

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[SPOILER-FREE]

Coming out of The Force Awakens I decided to put down not a review, but a post laying out whether or not the movie is anything more than a nostalgia bomb. I laid out my fears previously, and honestly, a few hours after the fact, I’m still not sure it did enough to escape that fate.

A lot of people might say a pure fan service nostalgia bomb is what the audience needs, but I for one walked into a new Star Wars movie to see the universe taken to new places. To be frank, Force Awakens mostly felt like a setup for what could be interesting new places in the next two movies. If you’ve already read some of the reviews, a lot of them seem to criticize it for being a bit too much like A New Hope. Continue reading

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Late to Space Games Part 3: Frontier Elite II

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Part 1
Part 2

Frontier: Elite II is one of the most mind-blowing games I’ve ever played, purely on a technical scale. Unlike the first Elite, I’m not just impressed with Frontier just became it came out 21 years ago. It really might be the most technically incredible open-world I’ve ever seen in a video game. It’s also further improved my perspective on what people hope No Man’s Sky will be.

Like the original, Frontier is a free download these days so I really suggest you at least take a look at it. There’s even a high-resolution widescreen version at that link. All that said, I can definitely understand why basically nobody else repeated the absolutely insane scale of Frontier. Its main identifying design decisions really set it up as more of a speculative simulation of space travel than a fun game. Continue reading

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Late to Space Games Part 2: Modern Elite Conversions

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Choosing the NES version of the original Elite seems to have greatly impacted my opinion of the game overall, as it makes a few small but crucial design decisions that actually make it a very unique edition. I learned this after trying out some of Elite’s more modern conversions. Compared to the hardcore simulator Elite is supposed to be, the NES version feels much more accessible.

Specifically I tried out Elite: The New Kind — a Windows port released earlier this year, the open-source PC fan remake Oolite, and the iOS clone Unknown. What took me by surprise with the modern PC conversions is how faithful they are to the original game, in more ways than I’d like to be honest. Continue reading

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Late to Space Games Part 1: Elite (1984)

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One game genre that’s mystified me over the years has been space flight simulators. The buzz surrounding No Man’s Sky convinced me to finally plan to investigate them this year. Part of the reason people are so mystified with the game is because it’s part of a genre that almost doesn’t exist on consoles. So, for a while you might see a lot of posts on this blog about space games. I decided to start off with one of the first and probably the most influential — the original 1984 Elite, well, a version of it at least.

On one hand I was always intimidated by how complex the flying mechanics of Wing Commander or X-Wing look. On the other hand I wondered how games about trading goods like Freelancer could ever be fun, even if it is in space. Even the title “Freelancer” sounds like some kind of economics job description that’s anti-fun. It’s one more area that makes PC gaming look much more intimidating than it actually is. I think I made the right decision in starting my trek through this genre basically from the beginning. Continue reading

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Indie Game Radar: Deadnaut And The Games That Make PC Gaming

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Deadnaut might be the most interesting, fully-formed, and slick game I’ve seen come out in recent memory that absolutely no one has talked about. Usually when I stumble upon one of these unknown indie games it’s because someone at Kotaku or Rock Paper Shotgun posted a blurb about it, or I caught the developer’s post on some obscure forum. Deadnaut just showed up in the midst of Steam’s new release calendar without a peep from really any publications, save for a developer blog on Kotaku Australia. It looks like far too good a game with too much work put into it to get buried and forgotten… if I can just wrap my head around its gameplay. Continue reading

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The Lingering Mysteries of No Man’s Sky

As usual The Game Awards, despite the re-branding, was really just another event for game trailers to try to hold up an awards show. I don’t actually know what games won what awards or what they did to celebrate 2014 gaming but we did get a great preview of what’s going on for the first half of 2015.

The most ambitious and in some ways divisive game shown there and at PSX was probably No Man’s Sky. It’s easy to be skeptical of a game that promises a galaxy with literally billions of life-sized planets to explore. Another source of skepticism however has been the content of the trailers. Many people still aren’t sure exactly what the game is or what you do in it. Continue reading

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