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Here's why I think you should get the new slim PS Vita  photo
Here's why I think you should get the new slim PS Vita
by Dale North

The revised, slimmer, lighter version of PlayStation Vita hit shelves this week. It's been out in Japan since October of last year, and now we're finally getting ours in a Borderlands 2 hardware bundle (which also includes 8GB PS Vita memory, all for $199).

There are plenty of portable-playing gamers on the fence over this new Vita model, so I thought I'd weigh in as a user and fan. I'm not necessarily trying to sell you on these. I mean, it's not like Sony gives me a cut or anything. I just want to go against some of the criticisms I've heard and explain that I think the slim Vita is pretty great. 

This piece won't cover why you should or shouldn't get a Vita. Because really?

Maybe we'll have that talk later.

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Advance Wars is better than CoD: Advanced Warfare photo
Advance Wars is better than CoD: Advanced Warfare
by Jonathan Holmes

When the word leaked that the next Call of Duty game is called Advanced Warfare, there was just one thing everyone everywhere wanted to know -- will Advanced Warfare be as good as a 10-plus-year-old Game Boy Advance game with a name that sounds kind of like Advanced Warfare?

Sadly, the answer is "no."

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Wargaming.net League Grand Finals recap from Warsaw, Poland photo
Wargaming.net League Grand Finals recap from Warsaw, Poland
by Dale North

The skinny arms of one of the team members of team Natus Vincere (also known as Na'Vi) were warbling dangerously as he attempted to lift the massive block of solid metal that is the trophy for the Wargaming.net League Grand Finals World Champions. His teammates rushed in to help him as spotlights shone down and a theater full of fans cheered and applauded in Warsaw, Poland this past Sunday. 

Natus Vincere took down 13 other teams over the three days of the event, which had players from six regions battling, and had fans and press from all over the world watching on while they did so. They took home about $110,000 in prize money, with runner-up team Virtus.Pro taking almost $100,000 themselves.

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Sony's Project Morpheus: An impressive first showing photo
Sony's Project Morpheus: An impressive first showing
by Dale North

Sony choose GDC as its coming out party for its virtual reality platform, Project Morpheus. The goal was to build interest at a show where just about every developer in the industry is in attendance. And from the look of the lines at their GDC floor booth yesterday, every one of those developers had someone in line to try it out. 

We finally got our faces in the headset late last night to try out the new demos that Sony prepared for the show. We were surprised to find that Project Morpheus is already on a level playing field with Oculus Rift, and even shows it up in some places.  

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XSplit Gamecaster makes game streaming so easy photo
XSplit Gamecaster makes game streaming so easy
by Dale North

Are you streaming gameplay? Well, forget cables, configurations, multiple PCs, software hacks, and confusion. That's all gone when it comes to streaming and capturing gameplay on your PC, starting today. XSplit Gamecaster is a simple software program that lets you send your PC or console gameplay to Twitch, Ustream, YouTube, and other sites without the hassles of previous solutions. 

We've known about it since last year, and have played with it a bit more recently, but the good news is that you won't have to wait long before you can try it out for yourself as it will be available on February 18.

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Here are your favorite gaming moments of 2013! photo
Here are your favorite gaming moments of 2013!
by Mr Andy Dixon

Last week, we asked you to share your favorite gaming memories of the year with the community, and the response was FANTASTIC! Seriously, the love you people expressed for some of your favorite games of 2013 was downright moving, and I enjoyed reading each and every comment.

Here's a brief recap of some of your responses. WARNING: Spoilers abound for many new games, so read with caution!

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Here are the worst games you played this year photo
Here are the worst games you played this year
by Mr Andy Dixon

Last week, I asked you to share your stories about the worst new games you played all year.

I am so sorry I asked.

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Here are your favorite songs and soundtracks of 2013! photo
Here are your favorite songs and soundtracks of 2013!
by Mr Andy Dixon

All week, we've been asking you to sound off on some gaming-related topics for our end of the year recap. Many of you took the time to chime in on our favorite and least favorite character posts, and the same rang true for our favorite songs or soundtracks call as well! BECAUSE MUSIC!

Our eardrums were rocked with some killer songs and OSTs in 2013, so let's crank up our speakers and take a listen to some of your favorites! If I were you, I'd also go ahead and bookmark this post for later, because there is a TON of awesome gaming music about to hit your face...

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Here are your favorite new characters from 2013! photo
Here are your favorite new characters from 2013!
by Mr Andy Dixon

Earlier in the week we asked you to sound off on your favorite new videogame characters in 2013. Here are the results!

From cartoon characters to muscular senators to a young woman who just will not stop dancing, a wide range of new characters were represented from just about every genre imaginable (no farming simulators this time, sadly). Hell, most of them weren't even unshaven white men with gruff voices!

Most of them, anyway.

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Here are your most hated new characters of the year photo
Here are your most hated new characters of the year
by Mr Andy Dixon

Earlier this week, we asked you to share your thoughts on the WORST new videogame characters of 2013. Here are the results!

Many of you took this opportunity to vent your frustrations (or at least upvote or downvote comments) regarding DmC's Dante, which is neat. Other than that obvious choice, there were quite a few other nominees for the wall of shame, and some that I certainly didn't expect!

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What were your favorite gaming moments of 2013? photo
What were your favorite gaming moments of 2013?
by Mr Andy Dixon

[All week long we've been asking for your thoughts on certain topics related to the year in gaming. Here's the final call for entries!]

2013 has been an amazing year for gaming. Hell, we've reviewed more 9.5s and 10s in the past three months alone than I think I've ever seen in all my time here. And it's not because we're getting soft in our old age; rather, this year's games have just been that good.

I already shared my favorite gaming memory of the year in our PS3 farewell post, but it's worth repeating. The game was The Last of Us, and the moment was when Joel and Ellie [SPOILERS] first make it to the university and a tower of giraffes pass by them. Joel, Ellie and I stood and watched those giraffes lumber their way out of view for what seemed like an eternity, and it was such a beautiful moment in such a bleak game that I will never forget it.[/SPOILERS]

A truly great game can mark your memory for a lifetime, and those are the stories we want to hear about right now! So go share your favorite gaming moments of 2013 with us in the comments below. Or, if you find yourself getting long-winded, write a blog! (Be sure to share the link below.) We'll be pulling in quotes from the community for a special recap post later this weekend, so take some time to think about your responses.

Have fun!

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What was the WORST new game you played this year? photo
What was the WORST new game you played this year?
by Mr Andy Dixon

[All week long we'll be asking for your thoughts on certain topics related to the year in gaming. Miss yesterday's post? Click here to chime in with your favorite new songs or soundtracks!]

Ride to Hell: Retribution. Final Fantasy All the Bravest. Resident Evil 6. Aliens: Colonial Marines. You get the point. Please don't make me keep looking these up. It hurts.

I thankfully avoided every stinker of a game released this year, but I know some of you weren't as fortunate. Some of you got conned into a ticket on the pre-order hype train and had no choice but to ride it to the end of the line. Some no doubt played through these toxic specimens because you knew they were turds, possibly to fulfill some masochistic fantasy that you should probably see a therapist about. Whatever the case, you no doubt played some real shit games this year, and we want to hear about them!

Share your awful game stories in the comments below. Or, if you find yourself getting long-winded, write a blog. (Be sure to share the link below.) We'll be pulling in quotes from the community for a special recap post later this week, so take some time to think about your responses!

Have fun! If it's even possible...

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What was your favorite song or soundtrack of 2013? photo
What was your favorite song or soundtrack of 2013?
by Mr Andy Dixon

[All week long we'll be asking for your thoughts on certain topics related to the year in gaming! Miss a previous post? Click here to sound off on your favorite and least favorite new characters!]

Gaming is graced with some amazing original songs and scores every year, and 2013 was no exception. From The Last of Us to Tomb Raider, Ni No Kuni to Super Mario 3D World, and everything in between, our ears were just as blessed as our eyes and fingers this year, and I'm not even sure I could pick my favorite if I tried!

What about you? Have a favorite song or soundtrack from 2013? Share your thoughts and stories in the comments below! Or, if you find yourself getting long-winded, write a blog! (Be sure to share the link below.) We'll be pulling in quotes from the community for a special recap post later this week, so take some time to think about your responses.

Have fun!

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Who was the WORST new videogame character of 2013? photo
Who was the WORST new videogame character of 2013?
by Mr Andy Dixon

[All week long we'll be asking for your thoughts on certain topics related to the year in gaming!]

2013 added some amazing new characters to our medium, but it also brought with it some serious stinkers. Annoying (and unwanted) co-op sidekicks, painful reimaginings of fan favorites from generations past, MERLENDERL -- the list goes on.

The object of my personal disaffection had to be Carver from Dead Space 3. The simple addition of an optional co-op character to one of my favorite horror series didn't turn out to be the harbinger I had worried it would be, but the design of said character couldn't have been much worse if they actively tried. Loud, brash, and full of the same grating military-FPS bravado I play games like Dead Space to avoid, I cringed every time Carver popped up on screen and the game didn't let me put a Plasma Cutter shot through his one good eye.

What about you? Share your thoughts and stories in the comments below! Or, if you find yourself getting long-winded, write a blog! (Be sure to share the link below.) We'll be pulling in quotes from the community for a special recap post later this week, so take some time to think about your responses.

Have fun!

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Who was your favorite new videogame character this year? photo
Who was your favorite new videogame character this year?
by Mr Andy Dixon

[All week long we're going to be asking for your thoughts on certain topics related to the year in gaming. Here's the first!]

2013 was absolutely ripe with juicy new characters in the realm of gaming. Badass '80s action heroes, hilarious narrators, endearing psychopaths, robot dogs, annoyingly philosophical trans-dimensional twins, ass-kicking little girls, and a little dude with a lamp hanging from his nose barely scratch the surface as to the eclectic selection or protagonists and NPCs on display this year.

My personal favorite has to be Rex Colt from Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon. His cheesy dialog and banter was straight out of the best (worst?) '80s action movies, and was a far cry (HAR HAR) from the usual FPS protagonist.

What about you? Share your thoughts and stories in the comments below! Or, if you find yourself getting long-winded, write a blog! (Be sure to share the link below.) We'll be pulling in quotes from the community for a special recap post later this week, so take some time to think about your responses.

Have fun!

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Wii Fit U weekly weigh-in: Week 3 photo
Wii Fit U weekly weigh-in: Week 3
by Dale North

[Every week, from early November through the end of 2013, I'll report on my use of Wii Fit U and how it benefits my health.]

Read Week 1's weigh-in here.

If this Wii Fit U weekly weigh-in accomplishes only one thing, I want it to be a clear measure of just how much weight I'll gain Thanksgiving week. It's going to be gross, folks.

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