Behind the Scenes of Video Game Journalism

Video games writer

A dream that I’ve had for most of my life has been to get paid to either 1) write for a video game company or 2) write about video games. It combines two of the great loves of my life, which should be obvious from the career choices and their similarities. As such, I always find it fascinating to see behind the curtain a little bit for either career.

In this case, the peek happens to be the life of a video games journalist. Over at Kill Screen, writer Joseph Bernstein recently put up a piece titled Intern Affairs: Behind Closed Doors, which happens to be a series about the time he spent as an intern at GamesRadar. This particular entry covers the world of previews and handshakes between developers and journalists, and it’s actually kind of fascinating to see how the sausage is made, so to speak.

Bernstein basically shows the way previews are handled in some cases, and the gang mentality that occurs because of that as developers try to win you over. In the end, Bernstein even posts the preview he wrote as the result of this encounter, which happened to be for the game MX vs. ATV: Untamed for the Wii. I don’t think it necessarily exposes anything shady or surprising, I just find it interesting.

So what do you guys think after reading this? Does it jade you a little to what goes on behind the scenes at some video game sites? Go!

Source – Kill Screen, Image Source – PlatformNation

The Outstanding Gaming Mysteries of 2011

Half Life 2 Episode 3

Let’s face it. We already know a whole lot of what to expect about 2011. We already know that we’re getting two badass new handheld systems in the 3DS and NGP. We also know that we could potentially have a Game of the Year contender by April when Portal 2 comes out, and that Uncharted 3 and Mass Effect 3 will be easy contenders on their release dates as well.

But there are still a handful of things that we don’t know. Mysteries, as it were. GamesRadar was kind enough to put together a list of the 12 biggest gaming mysteries that they hope to see answers for in 2011. These mysteries include but aren’t limited to: Tali’s face, the release of HL2 Episode 3 and a window for the next generation consoles.

There’s a bit more to it than those few I named, so I’d recommend checking it out yourself. Personally, the biggest thing I want to know in 2011 is the console question. I love the stride that this generation has hit on all fronts, and hope to see it continue for quite some time. I don’t want the will-they-or-won’t-they question hanging over us for several more years. I just want someone to say the consoles won’t come until 2015 and then we can all move on and enjoy our games.

So what about you guys? What are your biggest gaming questions for 2011, both in terms of untold stories in games or the industry at large? Go!

Source – GamesRadar

GamerSushi Asks: Things You Hate in Gaming?

Fetch Quest

I don’t generally consider myself a picky gamer, but when something taps into one of my pet peeves, I obsess about it until I go into a fit of epileptic nerd shakes. This list includes some of the following: mess-up-once-and-you’re-done-gameplay, artificially lengthening a game through menial tasks such as fetch quests, not being able to pause or skip long cut scenes, and one of my all time favorites, terrible friendly AI. OK, it’s not actually my favorite. It’s called facetiousism and I just made it up.

On the topic of things that suck in games, GamesRadar has entered the conversation with a hilarious feature titled Things I’m Sick of Games Making Me Do. I totally agree with nearly everything on the list (except climbing, which I can never get enough of), and the last one actually packed quite a lulz-punch, if you know what that means.

So what things do you guys hate in gaming? Go!

Source – GamesRadar

GamerSushi Asks: HD Remakes?

Metal Gear Solid 3

If there’s anything that the HD console generation has brought us, it’s the tantalizing promise of HD remakes of some of our old favorites. Inspired by this new (and hopefully spreading) trend, GamesRadar put together a wish list of 13 Playstation 2 HD remakes. I have to say, just thinking about that kind of thing gets my engines going. As one of the best consoles we’ve had, the idea of seeing Jak and Daxter, Final Fantasy and Metal Gear Solid restored and remastered for HD would be more than a bit incredible.

Ideally, we could spread that around a little bit to older developers and consoles, but that’s a bit more of a stretch than upgrading things from the PS2, no doubt. I’d love an HD Super Mario 64 (if Nintendo could get in on the HD game), as well as Link to the Past and some of the older Final Fantasy games. What would be on your wishlist for an HD remake? Go!

Source – GamesRadar

How to be a Gaming Jerk

Nothing quite brings out the inner jerk in me like a good rousing game of Halo matchmaking. For the last week, I’ve been enjoying Bungie’s new multiplayer offering in the form of the Halo: Reach Beta. Kicking it up with jetpacks, armor lock, Slayer and the like awakens old habits in me at times, it seems, even though much of the gameplay is new or different. Tonight, while playing, I found myself getting irritated at trash talkers. Soon enough, I was engaging in the famed tea bag maneuver at my opponents’ expense and it was glorious.

The funny thing is, sometimes this translates into other areas of gaming as well. GamesRadar has an awesome article up about 18 Ways to be a Bastard in Games, where they recount how you can be a total jerk in a number of different titles. They cover everything from killing hospital patients in GTA IV to choosing a character to die in Mass Effect simply because you get to have sex with the other. The most shocking thing about the list? I have done 11 out of the 18 things they mentioned, and most of the ones I haven’t done are because I haven’t played the game listed.

So what about you guys? What are your favorite ways to be a jerk in games? How many things on the list have you done? Go!


More Audio Commentary in Video Games

PortalI wouldn’t necessarily call myself an audio commentary guy, really, but there have been a few times where listening to audio commentary for movies has greatly enhanced my appreciation of the film. Aliens, for instance, is pretty spectacular to listen to, even though James Cameron can be a douche at times. Likewise, Serenity’s commentary track with Joss Whedon is a must-hear, as well as anything with Bruce Campbell in it.

The concept of audio commentary in video games is a relatively new one, and not something I hear about too often. I know that Valve included audio commentary as part of the Orange Box, specifically Portal, which was a fascinating endeavor to me. I recently saw this list of 5 games we wish had audio commentary on GamesRadar, and it got me thinking about this whole subject.

So what do you guys? Do you want audio commentary for some of your favorite games? What games do you want it for? Personally, I would love to hear audio commentary for the first MGS game, Super Mario 64, and Beyond Good and Evil. Go!

Source- GamesRadar

3D Dot Game Heroes Brings The Nostalgia

In case you were not aware, 3D Dot Game Heroes, a PS3 exclusive due to be released in May, brings a love and reverence to 8-bit classics. Indeed, the entire game seems like a homage/rip-off of the the original Legend of Zelda. Despite that, viewed in the proper context, it seems to be really awesome and is garnering some decent reviews.

GamesRadar has an awesome preview of some of the loading screens, which are old NES and SNES box covers, as seen through the lens of 3D Dot Game Heroes. Follow this link and check it out!

Source: GamesRadar

Weeping for Games Lost

Goldeneye Xbox Live ArcadeAs avid videogamers, we’ve all grown used to the hype machine. Every year it bares itself before us, offering up plenty of food for us to feast on, all the while luring us into its clutches. Kind of like that scene in Pan’s Labrynth. Only instead of the weird hand-eye dude it’s Master Chief. You know what I mean. Anyway, because of all this pumping of videogames that we’ve seen, we’ve grown equally used to the disappointment when some of these games somehow fall into the nether regions of gaming vaporware.

Taking a look at some recent entries into the ever-expanding catalog of games that won’t see the light of day, GamesRadar has posted a list of 19 Incredible Games You’ll Never Play. It really is astonishing to take a gander at the list, because I remember reading about a couple of the games in particular (Tiberium and Cipher Complex) as featured stories on magazines like Game Informer. In addition, there were a few of these titles that I didn’t know had been canned, such as Division 9.

I think the title on the list that makes me the most upset would have to be the Goldeneye HD remake that was going to release on XBox Live Arcade, which eventually got shelved. I also would have loved to play the FFXII spinoff mentioned, which is described as Helm’s Deep meets Chocobos. Um, yes please. And last, but certainly not least, Star Wars Battlefront III, a sequel to one of my favorite games of last generation.

Anyway, were you guys looking forward to any of the games on this list? Which of those titles do you think you would have wanted to play, and what games have been canceled in the past that really stung?

Source- GamesRadar

Batman: Arkham Asylum Opinions Surface

batmanOne game that I keep forgetting about for the Fall is Batman: Arkham Asylum. The game comes out in just a few weeks, and looks like just the kind of game that a great character like Batman has always deserved, with a cool cross of sneaking action with cool looking cutscenes. And hey, it even has Mark Hamill doing the Joker’s voice, so you can’t go wrong there.

But is the game any good? Apparently, yes. A few game publications are already starting to weight in with their opinions on the new Batman romp, and so far, it sounds awesome. The Official Playstation Magazine has given Arkham Asylum a 9/10, and GamesRadar has followed suit with a glowing 3 page preview. They even go as far as saying that this could be the greatest superhero game of all time.

So, who else is interested in this game. It may be moving up on my list, especially since it comes out in just a few short weeks on August 25th. And hey, if nothing else, you can test out the demo, which hits this Friday.

Source- GamesRadar and PS3Vault

Gaming’s Best Quotes

barrelrollOver the years, gaming has produced quite a few fond memories for me. There are the emotional moments, the rushes of pure adrenaline, the challenges, all of these things have created a slew of experiences for me to draw from. However, there’s another thing that gaming is great for, and that’s memorable quotes.

GamesRadar has put together a list of the 40 Most Repeated Game Quotes, ranging from error messages to ridiculous things said by a co-pilot rabbit in space. While I’ve heard most of the ones on the list, there were a few that I wasn’t quite as familiar with, so I was glad for the sound bytes they provided. I’d have to say my favorite gaming quote is probably the “master of unlocking” line from Resident Evil. So painfully bad and hilarious.

What about you guys? Are you familiar with the quotes on this list? What’s your favorite?

Source- GamesRadar

The Worst Online Gamers

online-gamersNothing is worse when playing a game online than getting stuck with some jerk on your own team. I mean, getting matched up against them is bad enough, but when you’re on the same team with them, you just have to put up with their garbage for the entire time you play, rather than just the occasional match-up. And the worst part about it is these jerks come up in all shapes and sizes.

So what are these different types of losers? GamesRadar has cataloged them in a recent article titled the 9 Worst Types of Gamer to Have on Your Team, and I have to say it’s pretty accurate. They run down the gobshite (trashtalker), the mute, the drill sergeant, the lone wolf and even the damsel, who always needs saving. There are plenty more, and all of them are hilarious, so I’d recommend reading up on the whole thing.

Which type of online gamer do you hate the most? Which category do you fall into? I’m part drill sergeant and part griefer. Woot!

Source- GamesRadar

The Definitive Holiday Gaming List

We all know that lots of games are coming out this Fall/Winter. We’ve been through this drill many times as gamers. We’ve gotten used to it. However,  I don’t know if I remember another year quite like this one, with so many quality titles coming out across a variety of platforms.

GamesRadar has put together an awesome list of “The 28 Best Games Still to Come in 2008”, to help you get an idea of what’s in store for you. It’s really wild to see them all listed together like this. I think I want to play about 14 titles on it.

Hooray for going broke this holiday season? How many make your list?

Source- GamesRadar