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Podtoid 287: Ya boy be hoopin' photo
Podtoid 287: Ya boy be hoopin'
by Kyle MacGregor

This week on Podtoid, oh hey, Podtoid is back from the dead. Also, Kyle MacGregor, Brett Makedonski, Laura Kate Dale, and Steven Hansen discuss hot new releases Life is Strange and The Order: 1886, Donski's strange amiibo addiction, and Steven's plan to start a basketball cabal.

Listen to the re;birth via direct download or do that iTunes thing if you're nasty.

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Very Quick Tips: Resident Evil: Revelations 2's Raid Mode photo
Very Quick Tips: Resident Evil: Revelations 2's Raid Mode
by Chris Carter

I'm thoroughly impressed by Capcom's efforts with Resident Evil: Revelations 2's Raid Mode. It's much deeper compared to previous efforts, augmented by a sleeker interface and a seamlessly integrated mini-story.

Because of that it may take a little bit longer to acclimate, so here are some tips.

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The first three rounds of Sid Meier's Starships are not enough photo
The first three rounds of Sid Meier's Starships are not enough
by Darren Nakamura

Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Earth released to mixed reactions. I loved how it took the took the classic gameplay to alien worlds, and I especially appreciated its underlying narrative about the future of the human race. Other long-time fans of the series saw it as derivative of Civ V, with too little added and too much stripped out.

Like it or not, one thing that Beyond Earth has done is to lay the foundation for Sid Meier's Starships. It continues the story of the human settlements on an alien planet, far enough into the future that they are able to travel between stars in less time than the initial exodus from Earth took. The result: a series of skirmishes for control of a very tiny galaxy. Sure, why not?

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Review: Resident Evil: Revelations 2: Episode 1 photo
Review: Resident Evil: Revelations 2: Episode 1
by Chris Carter

Resident Evil is in a weird place. After the middling Resident Evil 6 and the public flogging of Operation Raccoon City, I'm sure Capcom got the message that it needed to go back to basics. It did just that with Revelations on the Nintendo 3DS, which was met with enough positivity to warrant a full-on set of console ports.

Then Capcom reached overwhelming amounts of success with Resident Evil HD, a game that's as basic as you get in terms of fundamental survivor horror. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 may be more action-oriented than some other entries, but it's a damn fine showing for the series.

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Review: There Came an Echo photo
Review: There Came an Echo
by Darren Nakamura

Iridium Studios started out as a tiny developer with a humble Kickstarter for its rhythm role-playing game Sequence. It saw enough success that lead designer Jason Wishnov was able to fill out his team and spend more time taking on a much larger project. 

Four years later, There Came an Echo is finally out. Though it plays nothing like the studio's previous project, the two do share some striking similarities. Both are built on a neat idea, both explore themes of morality in science fiction, and both are a little rough around the edges.

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PC Port Report: Oddworld: New 'n' Tasty photo
PC Port Report: Oddworld: New 'n' Tasty
by Darren Nakamura

Like Chris, I had my first taste of Oddworld when it was new, back on the PlayStation in 1997. Abe's Oddysee and Abe's Exoddus were two of my favorite titles from that era, so when Oddworld: New 'n' Tasty was announced, I was pretty stoked to revisit the adventure through RuptureFarms and the surrounding areas.

To my chagrin, the PC version would not launch for many months after the PlayStation 4 version. At the very least, the wait is justified; New 'n' Tasty runs beautifully on my aging computer, and it features some of the bells and whistles that come with a Steam release too.

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Saving the newly erected Ass from poop water in Cities: Skylines photo
Saving the newly erected Ass from poop water in Cities: Skylines
by Steven Hansen

Paradox is sticking with, "let’s talk about our product on its own merits" tact with its upcoming city-builder from developer Colossal Order, but I am under no such nice-marketing guide (nor do I know tact, as this post will confirm).

Cities: Skylines is looking to be what busted ol' SimCity should’ve been.

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Review: htoL#NiQ: The Firefly Diary photo
Review: htoL#NiQ: The Firefly Diary
by Josh Tolentino

No, that isn't an encoding error up there in the headline: "htoL#NiQ" is indeed this PS Vita game's title, and is essentially a very stylish way to type "The Firefly Diary" in Japanese.

Whatever personal peculiarities led the team at Nippon Ichi to title their new game this way seem to extend to the game's design as well. htoL#NiQ marches to its own rhythm, and ends up being two things at once: a fascinating work of minimalism, and a needlessly difficult ordeal best enjoyed only by the most masochistic of flagellants.

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Experience Points .05: Demon's Souls photo
Experience Points .05: Demon's Souls
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 Demon's Souls. Feel free to share some of your own favorite things about the game in the comments!

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Review: Under Night In-Birth Exe:Late photo
Review: Under Night In-Birth Exe:Late
by Kyle MacGregor

The competition is fierce, and I'm not just talking about the folks delivering beat downs online. With so many fighting games on the market nowadays, fans of the genre are spoiled for choice. Studios are vying for mindshare, just as we're battling in the arena. Want people to take notice? Well then, you had better bring your 'A' game. And make sure to come out swinging.

That's exactly what Melty Blood studio French Bread has done with Under Night In-Birth Exe:Late, the latest 2D fighter to throw its hat into the ring. It might look like just another high-flying "anime" fighter at first glance, but looks can be deceiving. Under Night In-Birth is its own beast, one absolutely deserving of your time and attention.

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Review: Harold photo
Review: Harold
by Conrad Zimmerman

Moon Spider Studio has released its debut title, Harold, an endearing and challenging race game about the most incompetent runner ever to need protection from a guardian angel. With some quick thinking, quicker thumbs, and an opportunistic eye, players guide the titular Harold to victory against all odds.

Who doesn't love an underdog?

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The hunt is on for the Meta Knight amiibo, here is what I found photo
The hunt is on for the Meta Knight amiibo, here is what I found
by Chris Carter

[Update: Get this. One amiibo hunter is reporting that you can get $5 off any Wii U or 3DS game nationwide if your store does not have Meta Knight in stock. Even if your store denies you, it doesn't hurt to ask!]

Today, Best Buy has opened their doors across the country and welcomed amiibo hunters. Well, they're only welcoming a select few of them of course, because stock is universally low for their exclusive Meta Knight amiibo.

As I've done with a few major amiibo launches, I made a stop at a few Best Buy locations today to gauge their stock at retail, and it seems about on par with the rest of the exclusive releases.

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Very Quick Tips: Pokémon Shuffle photo
Very Quick Tips: Pokémon Shuffle
by Chris Carter

Pokémon Shuffle has an under-handed microtransaction system that heavily relies on making you wait to play, unless you pay.

But for some of you, casually picking up five games per day will be enough, and there is some fun to be had when you wade through all the nonsense. Here are some tips to help you stay free.

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Review: Pokémon Shuffle photo
Review: Pokémon Shuffle
by Chris Carter

Nintendo takes on the world of microtransactions with Pokémon Shuffle. What could go wrong?

A lot. 

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Review: The Order: 1886 photo
Review: The Order: 1886
by Chris Carter

The Order: 1886 opens up in a fairly gritty fashion -- a first-person sequence involving a near drowning, by way of water torture. It begins with a bang, thrusting you into this unknown, and frankly frightening world where half-breed creatures live among humans.

It's cinematic and gripping, and draws you into the world that Ready at Dawn and Sony have crafted together. But it doesn't really push the envelope from there, as the cinematic angle is prevalent in nearly every facet of the experience, often hindering gameplay.

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True Life: One man's descent into deliriumiibo photo
True Life: One man's descent into deliriumiibo
by Brett Makedonski

It's 11 p.m. on a Tuesday night, and I sit at my laptop writing. That's a half-truth; the bulk of my time is spent on a large retailer's website refreshing a page for a children's toy. Sorry, "collector's figure." F5, F5, one poorly thought-out sentence, F5 -- repeat ad nauseam, and I ain't gettin' sick of this anytime soon. Not when amiibo are on the line.

I was having a great night. I was over at a friend's playing music, talking, laughing. You know, acting like a social creature. Well-adjusted, and all that. That all changed when I pulled up reddit to see a thread informing anyone and (unfortunately) everyone that King Dedede was finally available on Target's site.

If you've lived this nightmare, you know how the story it goes. Any time lost is an amiibo lost. By the time I reacted, I was met with the unsightly message telling me that the product is "not sold online." Bullshit. It's just not sold online to me.

I immediately left my friend's place. I had to be in the comforting glow of my computer monitor. I needed to be in my safe place where all my cookies are saved and my accounts are logged into.

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