Category Archives: Game Reviews

Famed Gaming Champion Loses Records for “Cheating”

One of gaming’s most famous figures, Billy Mitchell has been stripped of all of his records that he has held for decades.

Mitchell, 52, had held the title of being the first person to have scored one million points on the arcade game “Donkey Kong.”  The decision comes after many years of allegations of cheating towards Mitchell which he has denied many times.

Twin Galaxies, which tracks video game records believes that Mitchell’s scores were achieved with the use of emulator, a computer program that replicates an arcade or console machine.  They presented their findings to Jeremy Young, a Donkey Kong forum operator who after seeing pictures of Mitchell’s gameplay, says that “those scores were impossible to achieve without a emulator.”

After Twin Galaxies did their own investigation, they concluded that Mitchell had indeed used a emulator and with the evidence posted on their page, they decided to ban all of Mitchell’s scores which include the first perfect score (3,333,360 points) in the original Pac-Man game and to ban all future scores of Mitchell’s (if he were to continue to play for records).

Twin Galaxies also reported their findings to Guinness World Records who also decided to remove Mitchell’s records from the Guinness Book of World Records.

Now, the record holder for the first person to have scored one million points on Donkey Kong is Mitchell’s rival, Steve Wiebe, who no longer competes for records. Wiebe is currently a math teacher in Washington (the state).

Mitchell has not respond to the stripping of his records and as of now, he may not speak ever but this could not be more embarrssing for the former “best gamer in the world.”

Well, a popular cartoon show, Regular Show had a character on the show called Garrett Bobby Ferguson (GBF) who looked like Mitchell. Mitchell sued the show trying to ruin his image and the case got thrown out of court. The character’s main trait and the reason why Mitchell sued the show… GBF was a villian who cheated at video games.

Well then, it looks like Regular Show has predicted time just like the Simpsons have done for decades.

Is Online Gaming Going to be Affected by the Net Neutrality Repeal?

Most of us remember a few months ago when the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) was hearing the case for and against “net neutrality.” Now, we are slowly hearing about the repercussions of repealing net neutrality.

The Entertainment Software Association (ESA), a video game industry lobby group, has decided to join in the lawsuit against the FCC, joining a mix of Democratic state attorney generals, tech companies like Mozilla (Firefox), and many more.

The ESA noted that its members will be harmed by the repeal and it would hurt online gaming the most. In a statement, the ESA said this was “because the FCC’s order permits ISP’s to take actions that could jeopardize the fast, reliable, and low-latency connections that are critical to the video game industry.”

Net neutrality is a very controversial topic in politics. The rules prohibit Internet service providers from blocking or throttling lawful Internet traffic and prevent extra-charges for people looking to get better access. These rules are crucial to the video game industry according to an ESA brief, filed in the U.S. Court of Appeals in the DC Circuit.

Also in the brief, it was noted that while music and movie streaming providers can use buffering to account for network problems, the ESA noted that their clients can’t do the same.

The ESA is also very worried about the downloads of large games and how these games can be “slowed down” due to the loss of net neutrality.

Big names in the video game industry that are represented by ESA include Sony, Nintendo, Microsoft, Ubisoft, and Disney.

ESA’s case will be under the name of Mozilla Corporation v. Federal Communications Commission and the United States of America. 

 

Lindsay Lohan Loses Lawsuit Against Take-Two

The never-ending lawsuit between Lindsey Lohan and Take-Two Interactive has finally ended in favor of the makers of Grand Theft Auto 5, but next time, they may not be so lucky.

The real life Lindsey Lohan and the GTA 5 character "Lacey Jones;" photo from digitaltrends.com
The real life Lindsey Lohan and the GTA 5 character “Lacey Jones;” photo from digitaltrends.com

Judges from New York state’s highest court ruled in favor of Take-Two Interactive in a lawsuit case. Lohan had sued Take-Two over the likeness of the GTA 5 character “Lacey Jones” who only appeared in one mission during the storyline game in a random event. Lohan had been fighting the case since 2014 which was called a “publicity stunt” by Take-Two.

Lohan’s case nearly was dismissed in 2016 but she was able to get her case to a New York Supreme Court judge who ruled against her. Then she appealed her case to the Court of Appeals which affirmed the decision of the state’s judge.

The unanimous ruling did find that video game avatars constitute a portrait of someone. However, Lacey Jones, described as a “beach-going young woman” lacked characteristics that reasonably identified the plaintiff.

Lohan’s lawsuit will most likely end here unless she can prove and show how the ruling and New York’s privacy laws conflict federal Constitution laws. If she can prove that, her case could reach the U.S. Supreme Court but the possibility of that happening is slim to none.

Even though Lindsey Lohan didn’t get the result that she was looking for, the ruling is very significant in New York. Video game avatars can be a likeness equivalent to photographs, films, or other depictions under the law.

Video game companies will have to watch twice before making a character that is similar to a celebrity because otherwise, they could end up in court and lose.

 

The Latest Update on GTA Online on PC Results in Many Bans

If you are a PC gamer with Grand Theft Auto 5 Online, you may had gotten banned for no apparent reason.

GTA Online's latest update is NASCAR on steroids but some PC users are unable to play due to a ban; photo from egmnow.com
GTA Online’s latest update is NASCAR on steroids but some PC users are unable to play due to a ban; photo from egmnow.com

After the “Southern San Andreas Super Sport Series” update, many users on PC have been reporting a wave of bans, either mistaken or for no good reason. Users on PS4 and Xbox One have not had the same bug as of now. Most of the bans on the PC have only been for 30 days instead of a lifetime but it still frustrates players who want to play the game and the latest update.

It is believed that Rockstar’s “anti-cheat” system has failed and according to one player on the GTA Online forum who has their own “anti-cheat” software, everyone in his session was labeled as cheating even though they haven’t been.

The system is singling out everyone who might be an illegal-modder which has resulted in bans for many who have done no wrong.

While it is natural for someone who has been caught cheating to say that they haven’t been, something has been amiss with the recent bans. Most of the players that have been banned have fewer than 10 hours of game time which suggests overreach on the game moderators’ parts.

Another thing that might be causing the bans is that some users do have a modder on their PC but the modder is only being used offline, not online.

Neither Rockstar or its parent company, Take-Two Interactive have made a statement to the GTA Online forum or a public statement about the situation.

Microtransactions in NBA2K have gotten ridiculous

When you have to pay virtual coins just to get a haircut… a haircut in a game. Then we have a problem with a company that used to be revolutionary.

Virtual Concepts better known as 2K is a subsidiary of Take-Two Interactive.They used to be that high-risk company that released top video games at low prices, games like ESPN NFL 2K5 that nearly put Electronic Arts’ Madden series out of business.

These guys that were so popular are now criticized for every move they make with their NBA2K series and rightfully so with NBA2K18.

The game itself is one big advertisement that promotes everything from cereal, chips, soda, and shoes. You can’t even play MyCareer without running into your “best friend” B-Fresh eating Reese’s Puffs in your house.

Your "best friend" in NBA2K18; photo from reddit.com
Your “best friend” in NBA2K18; photo from reddit.com

The advertisements effect the online game modes as 2K won’t blur out the background billboards of the advertisements as that would mean they would lose money. The ads get so bad that you can’t even skip cutscenes this year on MyCareer just because you see a box of cereal.

That doesn’t begin to explain the amount of microtransactions in the game this year. Players are use to having microtransactions to upgrade their players and those who didn’t buy the coins would “grin” for them.

In order to get a decent amount of “VC”(the name for the currency in the game) you would have to spend $20 for 75,000 VC and that’s not the highest amount you can get. If you spend $100, you will get 450,000 VC.

Now, we have to buy our haircuts and tattoos on our virtual players with the fact that its even harder to grin for the in game currency (you earn 1,000 VC per NBA game played, it takes over 10,000 VC just to upgrade your player).

The amount you pay for this game (which is $60) is the main reason why microtransactions should NOT be in this game. It’s totally reasonable for an app to have microtransactions as their game is usually free and if not free, it’s between 99 cents and $3.

However, when you shell out $60 of your own money, you expect to be able to compete with everyone and have a goodtime. Now, 2K excepts you to buy the game with the same gameplay as the year’s pervious game, just with a few polished details.

The game has been out for over six weeks and due to online issues, patches to fix the game (some think 2K released a “beta’ but that’s another story) and SO MANY ADS… The game is just not fun anymore.

It’s a good thing Assassin’s Creed Origins and Fortnite are alternatives to 2K and at least they won’t be begging you to spend money on virtual currency.

 

 

The “Impossible” is Now Possible: Video Games in Real Life

Many people have had thoughts before like: “Man, if that weapon on Fallout or Metal Gear Solid was real, imagine the damage it would do.” Well, someone in the U.S. Government had the same thoughts as well.

Various weapons in the video game world like railguns and lasers have been in development for years and are used in some places, while the weapons like plasma are not in use yet. Here are some video game weapons that may  or may not be actually real.

Railgun Specs; photo from science.howstuffworks.com
Railgun Specs; photo from science.howstuffworks.com

Railguns: Actually, railguns have been in development for decades now, with the first patent in the U.S. issued in July 1922 as no. 1,421,435 to a French inventor by the name of Louis Octave Fauchon-Villeplee. However, his development didn’t go too far due to the lack of technology during his time. Nazi Germany in 1944 was looking into the first theoretically possible railgun. The guns were to be mounted with six batteries and would be able to launch twelve rounds per minute. Their plans were thwarted by the Allies in World War II. These plans were found after the war and believed to be “impossible” after studies found that each gun would need enough power to light up half of Chicago. It took until 1962 before an operational railgun was possible, but it was only a scientific study. Then in comes the world of video games, where games like Halo, Metal Gear Solid and Fallout introduced the railgun as a weapon of mass destruction. In recent years, railguns have been created. The U.S. Navy tested a railgun that fired a projectile at the speed of “Mach 7″ in the 2000’s. After the success of that railgun, the U.S. Navy is going to have a railgun in use for intercepting missiles in 2018. Now, that’s something video games couldn’t make up.

LaWS on the USS Ponce; photo from www.stripes.com
LaWS on the USS Ponce; photo from www.stripes.com

Lasers: Some of us have been to places where they have laser tag with the fake guns, but the U.S. Navy (man, why do these guys get all of the new weapons?) has an operational laser weapon in use since 2014 that blinds the enemy. The LaWS, as it is called, will not be in use for long however as the ship it is on, the USS Ponce, will be decommissioned in 2018. The lasers in video games like Mega Man are meant to cut people in half. No words, if the U.S. military is planning to make a weapon like that.

Plasma: In Fallout, a plasma gun means your demise if you’re ever shot with one in online gaming mode. Researchers at the University of Missouri actually were able to create a very weak but impressive plasma gun in 2013. This has opened the possibilities of energy and weapons dealing with plasma, something thought to be impossible.

Death Star from Star Wars: photo from starwars.com
Death Star from Star Wars: photo from starwars.com

Honorable Mention – Death Star: Yeah, this one is impossible, but in 2012, a petition started on the WeThePeople site asking the U.S. Government to build a Death Star from Star Wars. Once the petition reached 25,000 signatures, an official response from the White House was necessary. It turns out it would take 830,000 years to make enough steel and as for the cost: let’s just say, you would need to find a planet made out of diamonds.

 

Featured Image Photo from NextBigFuture.com

EA Games: Past failures and present glitches

With the recent launching of Titanfall on PC and Xbox One, many gamers may not have been surprised that server errors disrupted the exciting new Entertainment Arts game. This resignation to expect laxness is the residual effect of  the enormous failure that was The Sims Online back in 2002 and Sim City Online just this past year, as well as many other trending server complaints registered with EA. Continue reading EA Games: Past failures and present glitches

Burial At Sea makes a splash

bioshock-infinite-burial-at-sea-logo
Bioshock is making a splash. Photo from Videogamesblogger.com.

As most young gamers know, the most anticipated downloadable content package was recently released for the Bioshock series. The Burial At Sea expansion brought a sense of belonging back to the gamers it originally enchanted by setting the DLC in the underwater utopia, Rapture. Continue reading Burial At Sea makes a splash

I need Ghosts in my life

Infinity Ward is at it again with their Call of Duty franchise, this time with a whole new futuristic storyline. Call of Duty: Ghosts has sold one billion dollars worth of games within a 24 hour period, but there’s much hesitation about purchasing the game with the eighth-generation consoles on the horizon. The story line behind Ghosts revolves around the main character, Logan, who’s in the middle of an attack caused by an enemy called the Federation who hijacked a weapons satellite. Continue reading I need Ghosts in my life

Tech Talk: Next generation game titles

In this episode of Tech Talk, we’ll discuss the titles that’ll tempt your heart and make you want to purchase a new console.

A few cases for the new game. Image from VG24/7.
A few cases for the new game. Image from VG24/7.

The latest game from Infinity Ward is Call of Duty: Ghosts. Ghosts is expected to break almost all records and stats set by its predecessors. Continue reading Tech Talk: Next generation game titles

Pokémon X and Y: A fresh start

The Pokémon series has warmed the hearts of many gamers since the 90s. A percentage of our youth from 1998 on was spent attached to our Gameboys, trading off monsters called Pokémon kept in tiny spherical devices. The goal of the series was to catch and train these Pokémon, battle your way to the top of the Pokémon League and become a Pokémon Master (an elite Pokémon trainer). Continue reading Pokémon X and Y: A fresh start

The mayhem that is Saints Row IV

The Saints Row series follows the character of a street gang member in his quest to be the boss of the gang. For the fourth installment, the wackiness is multiplied tenfold. Your character, known as the Boss, is now the President. During your inauguration as the Boss, you get abducted by aliens. Your abductor, an alien named Zinyak, wants to conquer Steelport (the city where Saints Row takes place), the world and possibly the universe.

Continue reading The mayhem that is Saints Row IV

GTA V: The game that delivers

Grand Theft Auto is an iconic in the video game industry. It practically set its own standard and it never disappoints. In fact, the game set a record for making a billion dollars in just three days. The most anticipated title of the year is here, and we got our hands dirty with it. Grand Theft Auto V is a staple for every gamer’s library.

Continue reading GTA V: The game that delivers