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The conflict at the heart of most videogames is between the game trying to kill the player, and the player trying to stop that happening. But sometimes we make things a lot easier for the game by being stupid, careless, or both stupid and careless. Double whammy. Just consider these various ways we've died in videogames where we had no one to blame but ourselves.
After the maelstrom of world news that was 2017, who could know what 2018 will bring? Videogames, that's who. For a glimpse of the year ahead, consider how games such as Terminator Salvation, Deus Ex and Iron Sky Invasion predicted what's to come in 2018.
Every so often game developers get bored of making their game and decide to develop a different, smaller game to put in the big game. These 'minigames' as us experts call them are occasionally brilliant, here are seven that are good enough to deserve their own game.
Whether due to a lack of games, a botched launch, or an unshakeable belief in the monetary potential of edutainment, plenty of games consoles have fallen by the wayside. Here are seven instances that made it pretty clear why for every hugely successful Wii, or PS2, or Nintendo DS, there are a bunch of Bandai Wonderswans. What? Exactly.
Game heroes are typically the picture of health, all muscle tone and good teeth. So it's all the more tragic when they canonically endure debilitating disease, smashed bones and severed limbs in the name of doing their heroic business. Just ponder these times being the hero was seriously bad for your health.
I wouldn't say we're completely hard-hearted cynics here, but the last time I had a real human feeling was when I stood on a Lego in bare feet, and I barely felt that. So imagine our surprise when we encountered these hidden secrets in videogames and found that the stories behind them were so sweet and so heartfelt, we may have even said "awww".
A short while back we pondered the allegedly 'non-lethal' options in games that were in fact as non-lethal as a skinny dip in a shark tank. Everyone in the comments of that video went on to add their own fabulously lethal non-lethal takedowns, so let's see what they had to share in the category of dubiously conscience-sparing, supposedly lighter alternatives to murder, or as we like to call them, I Can't Believe It's Not Murder.
Having our butts handed to us at the start of a game is so commonplace it's practically tradition, which is why there's nothing more gleefully empowering than much later on meeting the same baddie that humiliated you early in the game, and wiping the floor with them. Time now for a jog down memory lane, reminiscing about the times we totally showed that jerk from the opening act.
It's easy to take for granted simple skills such as holding items in a particular hand and drinking things. So spare a thought for these game characters who must unlock some ludicrously basic skills to get by in life. Consider these skills we can't believe we had to unlock.
New droids! Emperor Palpatine's final orders! The interior design of the Mos Eisley Cantina! Consider these and the other tidbits about Star Wars we learned from Battlefront 2, in more new Battlefront 2 single-player and multiplayer gameplay than you can menacingly twirl a double-bladed lightsaber at.
Normally games task us with something important or other that we're supposed to be doing, whether that's saving the world, scratching out a meagre existence in the post-apocalyptic wasteland or building a crime empire that Pablo Escobar would nod approvingly at. Were he not dead. Somehow or other we always get sidetracked by pointless but weirdly compelling activities that do nothing to push us toward our primary objective.
Sponsored Content: We're going to be pretty busy this November with the Xbox One X, and not just on account of how we must brave the tangled cables behind the TV to hook it up. We'll be busy playing new games optimised for Xbox One X, as well as games that are already out that will benefit from Xbox One X updates. Take a look at our Xbox One X to do list in this video.
William 'BJ' Blazcowicz begins Wolfenstein 2 a bit worse for wear, having gotten a bit blown up at the end of the last game. But our man Blazcowicz isn't about to let a little thing like that keep him from liberating America and be home in time for milkshakes. To that end, it's lucky that technology is on BJ's side; he's kitted out with more kooky high-tech equipment than ever and we fancy some of it for ourselves.
Some videogames offer non-lethal alternative methods to take out your foes. Just don't look too closely at these supposedly murder-free options, because it soon becomes apparent a lot are at least as deadly as the lethal method you've been trying to avoid. Here are the times we took the non-lethal option with probably fatal consequences.
State of Decay 2 is coming in spring 2018, with base building and character progression pumped up, a new blood plague to infect your survivor community, and a much-requested online co-op mode. Take a watch and discover the new things you can do in the zombie survival sim sequel.
We recently owned up to the various times we exploited the heck out of a boss' one obscure weakness, and it turned out we weren't alone. The comments were full of players with shameful stories of similarly taking advantage of these convenient soft spots. So have a look at these times our commenters saw an opportunity and, like Luke Skywalker stuffing a proton torpedo into a thermal exhaust port, used it to cheese a boss battle.
On the surface, a videogame is a bunch of pixels doing what they're told by a bunch of rules. Go beneath the surface though and among those rules you'll find some additional secret rules snuck in there to make your experience more fun. Game designer Jennifer Scheurle recently asked other games people on Twitter to share the crafty mechanics like these hidden inside games, and those devs went and spilled the tea. Just consider these sneaky ways games trick you into thinking you're more awesome.
They'll tell you a videogame is an indifferent computer program that doesn't care whether you win or lose because it's made of maths. In our experience, however, there are certain games that are very definitely out to get you, tipping the scales when the opportunity arises to really screw you over, in a way that can only be considered malice on their part. Consider the following evidence and you be the judge.
A good sidequest gives you a break from the main game, doing something fun or interesting. Other sidequests, however, decided what players really wanted was optional activities so tedious or time-consuming that we took the optional part seriously and opted to never finish them. Here are eight of our least favourite.
We recently did some griping about the times stealth made us tear our hair out and post it to the developers. Judging from the YouTube comments on that video, several of you share our depilatory frustration over a number of sections of dodgy stealth in yet more well-meaning videogames. Because we love your comments and sharing is caring, here are the times forced stealth drove you furthest up the wall.
Four years ago we made a video called 12 Evil Achievements For Heartless Bastards, which focused on the sort of achievements that moustache twirling ne'er-do-wells would be happy to display on their gamercards. Now, four years on, we have 13 more achievements that you should feel good and guilty about owning.
Once a fighting game character makes their debut, they usually stick around in that fighting game series. But some characters prove to be so weird, unpopular or tangled up in licensing issues that they make one appearance and are never seen again. Here are seven of our favourite one-shot fighting game characters who were never invited back for round two.
When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, and I believed these urban legends like a child. Now we've put away childish things, join us to reflect on these videogame urban legends we wholeheartedly believed when we were kids, back when bigger kids could convince us they were true because they had uncles who worked at Nintendo.
When stealth is done right, it's a gratifying test of your skill and focus. When stealth is done wrong, it's more irritating than a mosquito in your room at 3AM asking to borrow a tenner. Bear with us while we vent about the stealth sections that boiled our blood.
Many a hero has a past so chequered only a convenient spot of memory loss can hide their darkest secret from you, the player, while keeping them, the protagonist, from spending a whole game wracked with guilt. Remember, if you can, these times amnesia made you forget your terrible deeds until, ooh, act three or thereabouts.
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