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Which videogame makes you the happiest? photo
Which videogame makes you the happiest?
by Ben Davis

Whenever you're having a rough day, there's nothing better than sitting down and putting on a game that makes you happy just to play it. Something that makes you laugh and smile, helps to relieve stress, or gets you to stop worrying about things for a bit. For some, this might be their favorite game. For others, it's more of a comfort game. Nevertheless, everyone has at least one game that makes them happy.

So, which video game makes you the happiest? Here's what our staff had to say:

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Why are so few of Evolve's characters female? photo
Why are so few of Evolve's characters female?
by Kyle MacGregor

Evolve will launch with twelve hunters: eight men, three women, and a robot, though it's referred to as a "he." Of the three female characters, two are medics (Val and Caira) and the other (Maggie) is a trapper. There are currently no female assault or support class characters.

That could certainly change in the future. The asymmetric shooter's season pass contains an additional four hunters. As it stands, though, three-fourths of the cast are men, a ratio sure to disappoint some. Others may be surprised to learn there are any female characters at all.

The topic came up in an interview I conducted with Evolve creative director Phil Robb late last year. Speaking at developer Turtle Rock Studios' office in Lake Forest, CA, Robb told me "there was no political agenda" behind the uneven gender distribution. "It wasn't a planned thing," he added.

Robb went on to describe a fluid design process, one driven by "what feels right."

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Experience Points .03: EarthBound photo
Experience Points .03: EarthBound
by Ben Davis

Experience Points is a series in which I highlight some of the most memorable things about a particular game. These can include anything from a specific scene or moment, a character, a weapon or item, a level or location, a part of the soundtrack, a gameplay mechanic, a line of dialogue, or anything else about the game that is particularly noteworthy and/or awesome.

This series will no doubt contain spoilers for the games being discussed, so keep that in mind if you plan on playing the game for the first time.

This entry is all about EarthBound, one of my favorite games of all time. Feel free to share some of your own favorite things about the game in the comments!

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Casting The Legend of Zelda: A Netflix television series  photo
Casting The Legend of Zelda: A Netflix television series
by Kyle MacGregor

Netflix is reportedly making a live-action television series based on The Legend of Zelda.

The news immediately sent the country, nay the world into mass hysteria. Some folks expressed unfettered glee. Others were upset, their minds drifting back to 1993 with repressed memories of the Super Mario Bros. movie seeping up through the floorboards of their tortured psyches. 

Anyway, let's suppose it's true. Such a production will need a cast. Let's put together another one.

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Dream cast: I want these actors for Netflix's live-action Legend of Zelda photo
Dream cast: I want these actors for Netflix's live-action Legend of Zelda
by Steven Hansen

I'm sure you've heard the bizarre news. Netflix is working on a live-action The Legend of Zelda series that is described as, "Game of Thrones for a family audience," which is kind of like if Breaking Bad was about Peanuts characters in a lemonade stand competition.

I think Netflix is missing a huge opportunity to take J. K. Rowlings' Game of Thrones style--nudity and blood and tits--and present an aging Nintendo fanbase with a gritty re-imagining of the universe, but I'll respect Netflix's direction and cast a Legend of Zelda series where throne ascendancy disputes get solved like the time on Fresh Prince where it turns out Uncle Phil is really good at billiards.

Not everything on television can be mature content for grown ups about dragons and skeletons, after all. 

Here's my dream cast! 

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5:00 PM on 02.06.2015

Friday Night Fights: Call of Earth: Last Hawk Defense 4

Welcome back to Friday Night Fights! Once again, I am your new God host, Mike Effin Martin. Looking at the above image, I would not want to be Tony Hawk's kid? Sheesh. As a parent, I cringe. As a person who loves skateboardin...

Mike Martin







Samus and Sagat: Prepping for Street Fighter V and Super Metroid II photo
Samus and Sagat: Prepping for Street Fighter V and Super Metroid II
by Jonathan Holmes

[Update: We've gotten a lot of great entries in the gif contest! It seemed a shame to leave them out in the cold, so I've embedded the animations that never made it to the comments into the post below. I also forgot to tell you when the contest would be over. We'll stop taking entries whenever the next episode of Samus and Sagat comes out, which with any luck will be just in time for Valentine's Day. And yes, we have something special planned for that weekend. Just you wait.]

A lot of you told me that you really liked Samus and Sagat episode one. Thank you so much! Even more of you told me that you almost didn't watch the show at all because you thought it was a cartoon. Sorry about that!

To be 100% clear, Samus and Sagat is a live-action fake sitcom about Metroid's Samus Aran (Maddy Myers) and Street Fighter's Sagat (me) living as roommates. That said, we try to incorporate animation into things when we can.

Luckily, we had a really good excuse to use some fake videogame graphics in this episode. This one is about the differences between being a videogame starlet and an older, well known but not particularly popular side character from an ensemble cast. Imagine a conversation between Chun-Li and Waluigi about where their careers are going. It's like that. 

Crap, now I wish I had made that show instead. Maybe next time. 

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6:00 PM on 02.05.2015

Five things about the Persona 5 trailer from someone who knows nothing about Persona

I'm going to put myself out there a bit. I know next to nothing about Persona. You see, we all have our beats around here. I leave Persona and the like to the ilk of Kyle and Steven. They're much more excited to write ab...

Brett Makedonski

3:00 PM on 02.05.2015

Five things we just learned about Persona 5

Today, Atlus gave us our first look at Persona 5 in motion, and hot damn does it look amazing. We've been watching and rewatching the debut gameplay trailer all day. It's like a train wreck. You can't look away. Except unlike a train wreck it's glorious and beautiful and I love it. Anyway, we've noticed some things about the new game and have decided to share our thoughts.

Kyle MacGregor



Pokémon: A poem for Gardevoir photo
Pokémon: A poem for Gardevoir
by Kyle MacGregor

You asked for this. I take no responsibility for my actions. None at all. Back, you goblins! Back!

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Mecha Trigger made me feel real dumb before it made me feel (kind of) smart photo
Mecha Trigger made me feel real dumb before it made me feel (kind of) smart
by Nic Rowen

When people say “educational game” I instinctively clench up. I was raised in the heyday of Canadian educational software, with all the impenetrable geography-teaching trucking simulators and embarrassingly stilted STD/drug awareness adventure games you could ever stand to play. But Mecha Trigger, developed by the game design and development specialization at Michigan State University is a different breed of learning-game.

It glides in stealth bomber style, undetected by the alarm systems and internal klaxons that normally weed out Mavis Beacon and her ilk by dressing up its lesson-work under the guise of giant robots blowing the shit out of each other.

As far as disguises go, it's hard to do better.

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Meet the winner of Nintendo Power's The Mask II contest photo
Meet the winner of Nintendo Power's The Mask II contest
by Tony Ponce

In my heart of hearts, Nintendo Power will never die. If you were an American Nintendo gamer in the late '80s to early '90s, this monthly rag granted you unfettered access to a world of insider news and gossip that made you the envy of every schoolyard game jockey. The magazine itself may be gone, but its legacy is immortal.

Over the course of nearly 25 years, a number of features and events inside and outside the pages of Power became legendary -- the Super Mario and A Link to the Past comics, the Star Fox 64 promotional VHS, EarthBound's literally stinky ad campaign. But among the most infamous was the ill-fated The Mask II Player's Poll Contest.

In Vol. 77, published in October 1995, Nintendo offered one lucky winner a spot as an extra in the sequel to the smash hit action comedy The Mask. Production on the movie was halted indefinitely after Jim Carrey declined to reprise his role, which also meant that whoever won the contest was boned. The Nintendo Power editorial staff did eventually deliver a public apology... in the final issue. What happened in the 17 intervening years? Was the winner awarded an appropriate consolation prize, or did the Big N leave the kid high and dry?

Well, why don't I just ask him directly?

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Hot Take: Grim Fandango is hilarious, but the puzzles suck photo
Hot Take: Grim Fandango is hilarious, but the puzzles suck
by Mike Cosimano

Is it because you know the game? Or is it because you saw a skeleton on the cover? Either way it's all the same, because this is another Hot Take! Today, we're grabbing our scythes and diving into the wacky world of Grim Fandango Remastered for PlayStation 4.

Now, I was, how you say, "three years old" when this game came out, so I don't quite have the same amount of reverence you folks might have for this beloved LucasArts title. So, from a fresh young'un's perspective, I can sort of see why people remember Grim Fandango so fondly. The parts of it that aren't a videogame (like the visuals or the writing) are endlessly memorable, but the puzzles...hoo boy. You'll see what I mean.

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7:00 PM on 02.01.2015

Sonic, nipple slips, and Super Bowl gaming memories

Ah, the Big Game. The NFL championship. The Big Gambino. I'm just sitting here enjoying a brewski and last night's pizza watching big men beat up on each other and it's pretty good. Of course, like usual, I'm sitting beside t...

Steven Hansen

12:00 PM on 02.01.2015

The Sup Holmes Bowl kicks off with Starr Mazer Vs. Always Sometimes Monsters

[Sup Holmes is a weekly talk show for people that make great videogames. It airs live every Sunday at 4pm EST on Youtube, and can be found in Podcast form on Libsyn and iTunes.] Today is the Super Bowl! I...

Jonathan Holmes

9:30 AM on 02.01.2015

Beard View: Attack on Titan: The Last Wings of Mankind

Our beard buddy Jed is back with another look at a game you may have heard of, but probably haven't played. This time we have Attack on Titan: The Last Wings of Mankind, the Japaneses 3DS exclusive based on the popular anime...

Jonathan Holmes