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  1. Summer is upon us, and with the hot days, we all love to have a nice cold ice cream treat to cool off. It's an impulse that brings friends and family together to enjoy refreshing snacks. To honor the tradition, I've put together a fun list highlighting some of the best (and strangest) ice cream appearances in and around video games. 5. Kirby Now, can anyone tell me definitively that Kirby is not some sort of ice cream homunculus conjured by the dreams of some eldritch god? Because, for as delightful as the pink puffball might appear, his abilities are terrifying. He has demonstrated the ability to consume his foes entirely only to become strange copies of them afterward. Not only that, but in Kirby Super Star Saga, he demonstrated a mastery of martial arts that was capable of breaking a planet in half with nothing more than his bare hands - or whatever Kirby's limbs actually are. Despite being a terrifying force that walks the line between heroic and monstrous, Kirby possesses an unfortunate similarity to ice cream. Fans of the series have picked up on this visual comparison and created enough fan art that a Google search of "kirby ice cream" yields unexpected results. Instead of scenes or screenshots of Kirby eating the ice cream that already permeates his numerous titles, the top results are artistic or culinary recreations of Kirby as an edible dollop of ice cream himself. While brainstorming this list, I thought "Oh! Kirby eats cute ice cream! Perfect!" But I guess it's not enough to merely appreciate the cute character eating cute ice cream. We have to imagine Kirby as food, or actually make him into real food, too. I'm not mad, I'm just a little disappointed at how many people want to literally consume Kirby. 4. The Pizza Sundae from Costume Quest You could be forgiven if you played the original Costume Quest without noticing the Pizza Sundae. Scattered throughout the Double Fine RPG are collectible items known as Creepy Treat Cards. While in the sequel made these items into equippable stickers, the original just had them there as something fun to collect as a sort of in-game achievement system. Completing all three rounds of bobbing for apples at the mall will net players the pizza sundae Creepy Treat Card. While not terribly exciting by itself, the strange frozen treat caught the attention of culinary creators around the internet. Right now, intrepid cooks can find recipes to recreate the spooky, frozen delicacy. While initially many found the food to be a gross concept, some saw potential in the idea. One of the most widely circulated versions comes courtesy of Gourmet Gaming, a Tumblr dedicated to food and gaming. The recipe idea pictures the pizza sundae as an ice cream dish designed to look like a pizza. It calls for multiple layers of ice cream and candied toppings. The resulting dish looks like a delicious ice cream cake with the soul of an ice cream sundae and the shape of a pizza. 10/10 would definitely eat despite its origins as an in-game gag. The creation earned so much recognition that the in-game creator of the pizza sundae reached out to Gourmet Gaming to congratulate them on a job well done. Honorable Mention: Sonic This one doesn't really count as ice cream in video games since, as far as I know, Sonic doesn't eat ice cream in any of his games (but don't quote me on that). No, Sonic receives a mention of dubious honor on this list for his iconically derpy ice cream incarnation that inexplicably became a staple of ice cream trucks across the United States. Following the release of Sonic the Hedgehog in 1991, these melty boys made their way around the nation. However, it wasn't until the recently that people began to open up about their deep connections to the frosty treat. The deluge of Sonic ice cream images that followed the initial postings about it confirmed what occasional purchases could not: The Sonic ice cream bar had an unfortunate tendency to melt while making its way from production and into the hands of both children and adults. This led to a disproportionate number of said treats to have the likeness of Sonic somewhat... altered. Sonic earns a mention here for how incredibly silly and strange his melted incarnations became. It somehow comes across as both endearing and pitiable. Perhaps that's the secret to the chilly blue treat's longevity as an ice cream truck staple? 3. Vanillite + Alcremie OKAY, LOOK. We already went over this with Kirby. Nintendo, stop making characters that looks like ice cream! I mean, look at these two Pokémon; they're clearly delicious! Vanillite has long been criticized for its design being incredibly similar to a soft serve ice cream cone. Each of its subsequent evolutions, Vanillish and Vanilluxe, only serve to reinforce the comparison by turning into a traditional ice cream cone and then a sundae. While hardly the only Pokémon to look like food, something about its association with such a sweet treat really stuck in the minds of Pokémon fans the world over. More recently, Alcremie appeared in a trailer for Pokémon Sword and Shield. Many thought that the critiques of Vanillite might dissuade the creation of more edible Pokémon, but Game Freak looks to be doubling down, insisting on putting more ice cream creatures into their upcoming Pokémon RPGs. If anything, Alcremie looks even more like food than its predecessors. It has strawberries in its... hair? Body? What is on its head anyway? Wait, we're probably better off not knowing. 2. Kid Icarus' Floor Ice Cream Have you ever looked at ice cream that has fallen or dripped onto the floor and thought to yourself, "It's still good. I should eat that?" Kid Icarus' Pit certainly has. Ice cream stands out as one of the handful of food items that appears throughout the course of Kid Icarus: Uprising. When Pit eats those food items, he regains health. However, very few characters in games seem actively aware of this dynamic quite like Pit. The intrepid angel hasn't appeared in many games, but his 3DS outing, Kid Icarus: Uprising, allowed his plucky and eccentric personality to come to the fore. Moreso than most Nintendo titles, Pit seems to be very aware of the game-like nature of his universe. He accepts the way things are almost without question, leading him to loudly defend his in-game behavior to his allies. Kids, don't eat ice cream, or food in general, off the floor. Eating ice cream off the floor might be good for Pit's health, but probably wouldn't do much for yours. It might even make you sick! Please, just say no to floor ice cream. Honorable Mention: Whatever Ice Cream Sweet Tooth Sells in Twisted Metal Sweet Tooth is an insane killer. He's also a clown... who drives a demonic ice cream truck. While selling ice cream certainly isn't the goal or even often depicted in the Twisted metal series, there must be some kind of ice cream in that evil truck somewhere. In fact, we do see the goddess Calypso serving ice cream out of it in Twisted Metal: Small Brawl. Due to the lack of ice cream in the series, Twisted Metal's flagship vehicle and character couldn't earn a spot on this list. However, it's undeniable that Twisted Metal has one of, if not the only, readily recognizable ice cream-related characters. That unique distinction merited an honorable mention on this list. Congratulations, Sweet Tooth, maybe with this award you can turn away from your life as a demon clown and just sell ice cream? 1. Kingdom Heart's Sea Salt Ice Cream Ice cream plays a strangely large role in the Kingdom Hearts series. Specifically, the sea salt ice cream flavor brings characters together. The unique flavor stood out to North American audiences following its first appearance in Kingdom Hearts II. Since then, the frozen delicacy has played roles both big and small in Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep, Kingdom Hearts Re:Chain of Memories, Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days, and Kingdom Hearts III. Tetsuya Nomura began integrating sea salt ice cream into Kingdom Hearts after visiting Tokyo DisneySea, one of Disney's international theme parks. They served the ice cream there and it got Nomura thinking about how children would spend their time during their summer vacations. Ever since, it became a shorthand way for the series to convey friendship and nostalgia for better times. The flavor has been recreated by Kingdom Hearts fans and gaming enthusiasts. Prominently, Rosanna Pansino showed her audience how to make their own sea salt popsicle ice cream treats in a video back in 2014. Her cooking video has taught over 5.5 million people how to make their own version of the Kingdom Hearts ice cream and that's pretty incredible. It would seem that Tetsuya Nomura's shorthand for friendship brought more than just the friends in Kingdom Hearts together - it brought all of us a little bit closer, too. What's your favorite video game ice cream? Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games!
  2. Summer is upon us, and with the hot days, we all love to have a nice cold ice cream treat to cool off. It's an impulse that brings friends and family together to enjoy refreshing snacks. To honor the tradition, I've put together a fun list highlighting some of the best (and strangest) ice cream appearances in and around video games. 5. Kirby Now, can anyone tell me definitively that Kirby is not some sort of ice cream homunculus conjured by the dreams of some eldritch god? Because, for as delightful as the pink puffball might appear, his abilities are terrifying. He has demonstrated the ability to consume his foes entirely only to become strange copies of them afterward. Not only that, but in Kirby Super Star Saga, he demonstrated a mastery of martial arts that was capable of breaking a planet in half with nothing more than his bare hands - or whatever Kirby's limbs actually are. Despite being a terrifying force that walks the line between heroic and monstrous, Kirby possesses an unfortunate similarity to ice cream. Fans of the series have picked up on this visual comparison and created enough fan art that a Google search of "kirby ice cream" yields unexpected results. Instead of scenes or screenshots of Kirby eating the ice cream that already permeates his numerous titles, the top results are artistic or culinary recreations of Kirby as an edible dollop of ice cream himself. While brainstorming this list, I thought "Oh! Kirby eats cute ice cream! Perfect!" But I guess it's not enough to merely appreciate the cute character eating cute ice cream. We have to imagine Kirby as food, or actually make him into real food, too. I'm not mad, I'm just a little disappointed at how many people want to literally consume Kirby. 4. The Pizza Sundae from Costume Quest You could be forgiven if you played the original Costume Quest without noticing the Pizza Sundae. Scattered throughout the Double Fine RPG are collectible items known as Creepy Treat Cards. While in the sequel made these items into equippable stickers, the original just had them there as something fun to collect as a sort of in-game achievement system. Completing all three rounds of bobbing for apples at the mall will net players the pizza sundae Creepy Treat Card. While not terribly exciting by itself, the strange frozen treat caught the attention of culinary creators around the internet. Right now, intrepid cooks can find recipes to recreate the spooky, frozen delicacy. While initially many found the food to be a gross concept, some saw potential in the idea. One of the most widely circulated versions comes courtesy of Gourmet Gaming, a Tumblr dedicated to food and gaming. The recipe idea pictures the pizza sundae as an ice cream dish designed to look like a pizza. It calls for multiple layers of ice cream and candied toppings. The resulting dish looks like a delicious ice cream cake with the soul of an ice cream sundae and the shape of a pizza. 10/10 would definitely eat despite its origins as an in-game gag. The creation earned so much recognition that the in-game creator of the pizza sundae reached out to Gourmet Gaming to congratulate them on a job well done. Honorable Mention: Sonic This one doesn't really count as ice cream in video games since, as far as I know, Sonic doesn't eat ice cream in any of his games (but don't quote me on that). No, Sonic receives a mention of dubious honor on this list for his iconically derpy ice cream incarnation that inexplicably became a staple of ice cream trucks across the United States. Following the release of Sonic the Hedgehog in 1991, these melty boys made their way around the nation. However, it wasn't until the recently that people began to open up about their deep connections to the frosty treat. The deluge of Sonic ice cream images that followed the initial postings about it confirmed what occasional purchases could not: The Sonic ice cream bar had an unfortunate tendency to melt while making its way from production and into the hands of both children and adults. This led to a disproportionate number of said treats to have the likeness of Sonic somewhat... altered. Sonic earns a mention here for how incredibly silly and strange his melted incarnations became. It somehow comes across as both endearing and pitiable. Perhaps that's the secret to the chilly blue treat's longevity as an ice cream truck staple? 3. Vanillite + Alcremie OKAY, LOOK. We already went over this with Kirby. Nintendo, stop making characters that looks like ice cream! I mean, look at these two Pokémon; they're clearly delicious! Vanillite has long been criticized for its design being incredibly similar to a soft serve ice cream cone. Each of its subsequent evolutions, Vanillish and Vanilluxe, only serve to reinforce the comparison by turning into a traditional ice cream cone and then a sundae. While hardly the only Pokémon to look like food, something about its association with such a sweet treat really stuck in the minds of Pokémon fans the world over. More recently, Alcremie appeared in a trailer for Pokémon Sword and Shield. Many thought that the critiques of Vanillite might dissuade the creation of more edible Pokémon, but Game Freak looks to be doubling down, insisting on putting more ice cream creatures into their upcoming Pokémon RPGs. If anything, Alcremie looks even more like food than its predecessors. It has strawberries in its... hair? Body? What is on its head anyway? Wait, we're probably better off not knowing. 2. Kid Icarus' Floor Ice Cream Have you ever looked at ice cream that has fallen or dripped onto the floor and thought to yourself, "It's still good. I should eat that?" Kid Icarus' Pit certainly has. Ice cream stands out as one of the handful of food items that appears throughout the course of Kid Icarus: Uprising. When Pit eats those food items, he regains health. However, very few characters in games seem actively aware of this dynamic quite like Pit. The intrepid angel hasn't appeared in many games, but his 3DS outing, Kid Icarus: Uprising, allowed his plucky and eccentric personality to come to the fore. Moreso than most Nintendo titles, Pit seems to be very aware of the game-like nature of his universe. He accepts the way things are almost without question, leading him to loudly defend his in-game behavior to his allies. Kids, don't eat ice cream, or food in general, off the floor. Eating ice cream off the floor might be good for Pit's health, but probably wouldn't do much for yours. It might even make you sick! Please, just say no to floor ice cream. Honorable Mention: Whatever Ice Cream Sweet Tooth Sells in Twisted Metal Sweet Tooth is an insane killer. He's also a clown... who drives a demonic ice cream truck. While selling ice cream certainly isn't the goal or even often depicted in the Twisted metal series, there must be some kind of ice cream in that evil truck somewhere. In fact, we do see the goddess Calypso serving ice cream out of it in Twisted Metal: Small Brawl. Due to the lack of ice cream in the series, Twisted Metal's flagship vehicle and character couldn't earn a spot on this list. However, it's undeniable that Twisted Metal has one of, if not the only, readily recognizable ice cream-related characters. That unique distinction merited an honorable mention on this list. Congratulations, Sweet Tooth, maybe with this award you can turn away from your life as a demon clown and just sell ice cream? 1. Kingdom Heart's Sea Salt Ice Cream Ice cream plays a strangely large role in the Kingdom Hearts series. Specifically, the sea salt ice cream flavor brings characters together. The unique flavor stood out to North American audiences following its first appearance in Kingdom Hearts II. Since then, the frozen delicacy has played roles both big and small in Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep, Kingdom Hearts Re:Chain of Memories, Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days, and Kingdom Hearts III. Tetsuya Nomura began integrating sea salt ice cream into Kingdom Hearts after visiting Tokyo DisneySea, one of Disney's international theme parks. They served the ice cream there and it got Nomura thinking about how children would spend their time during their summer vacations. Ever since, it became a shorthand way for the series to convey friendship and nostalgia for better times. The flavor has been recreated by Kingdom Hearts fans and gaming enthusiasts. Prominently, Rosanna Pansino showed her audience how to make their own sea salt popsicle ice cream treats in a video back in 2014. Her cooking video has taught over 5.5 million people how to make their own version of the Kingdom Hearts ice cream and that's pretty incredible. It would seem that Tetsuya Nomura's shorthand for friendship brought more than just the friends in Kingdom Hearts together - it brought all of us a little bit closer, too. What's your favorite video game ice cream? Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! View full article
  3. E3 is right around the corner, accelerating towards us at an alarming pace that seems to increase every year. But no problem! Extra Life has your back. We collected the games and dlc that we expect to see at this year’s show and the rumors that we’ve heard. E3 runs from Tuesday, June 11 to Thursday, June 13. Before things even start though, plenty of gaming news drops via press conferences and events. It all can add up to a lot to keep track of surrounding gaming's biggest event. During the show, keep your social channels tuned to Extra Life’s social channels for updates from the show floor. Going to E3? Visit the Extra Life booth! The Press Conferences Before and during E3, many companies hold press conferences. These media events are the place for companies to showcase the upcoming year’s releases and build the hype. Many take the whole year right after the previous E3 to plan and offer extravagant and flashy presentations. Some devs/publishers hold them live and some like Nintendo or Devolver opt-in for pre-recordings. If we, the audience, get very lucky, we also experience lovely gems of human awkwardness. The conferences can be viewed on various streaming mediums. All of the times below are U.S. Pacific Time. Sunday, June 9 Microsoft 1:00 PM Bethesda 5:30 PM Devolver Digital 7:00 PM Monday, June 10 PC Gaming Show 10:00 AM Limited Run Games 12:00 PM Ubisoft 1:00 PM Kinda Funny Games Showcase 4:30 PM Square Enix 6:00 PM Tuesday, June 11 Nintendo 9:00 AM No Sony, What about Death Stranding? You might have noticed that PlayStation wasn’t listed above. That’s because Sony made an industry-shaking decision to not attend E3 this year. This marks the first year that Sony won’t attend the conference in the 25 years of the conference. News of the decision broke last year via a Kotaku report. Sony released a statement, “PlayStation fans mean the world to us and we always want to innovate, think differently and experiment with new ways to delight gamers.” Sony continued, “as a result, we have decided not to participate in E3 in 2019. We are exploring new and familiar ways to engage our community in 2019 and can’t wait to share our plans with you.” So about those said plans, it’s speculated that Sony is gearing up for the release of the PlayStation 5 and possibly some next-gen VR hardware. The PS5 has a release window of Spring 2020 or later. An update on The Last of Us 2 and Death Stranding might not come directly from E3, but it’s likely Sony will ride the E3 hype wave with announcements adjacent to the event. On May 29, Kojima Productions released the Official Release Date Trailer for Death Stranding. Through the video, we received a slew of new details on the story, saw more gameplay, and got that coveted release date. The game will release later this year on November 8 exclusively to the PS4. FF7 Remake and The Avengers Project With Square Enix confirmed for E3, the Final Fantasy remake will most likely shine as a highlighted part of the company’s booth. We haven’t gotten a release date for the game. It was previously announced that the game would be released in an episodic format, so we may at least see the release date for that first installment. The latest we’ve seen from the FFVII front came in the form of a new trailer released on May 9. In that trailer, we got a look at more story and gameplay with a focus on Aerith, one of the iconic protagonists of FFVII. In the video description, there was a vague but promising note, “more details coming June 2019.” We got a teaser on a project partnering Marvel with Square Enix back in 2017. Then after some wait, the two companies revealed The Avengers Project announcement trailer. With a name like that, with an unfinalized game title, it was pretty obvious we would be waiting for a while until we’d actually see this game. On May 29, it was confirmed that The Avengers Project would be at E3 via a tweet from account @PlayAvengers. “Tune into Square Enix Live E3 2019 for the worldwide reveal of Marvel’s Avengers,” said the tweet. So hey, we’ve got a name now and confirmation that the game does indeed still exist. Cyberpunk 2077 At E3 2018, Cyberpunk 2077, the newest IP from The Witcher 3 developer CD Projekt Red, kept mystique by remaining behind closed doors. Later on, we were able to see the 48-minute demo trailer that was reserved for select eyes. This year though, CD Projekt Red is ready to bare all on the public floor. https://mobile.twitter.com/AdamBadowski/status/1131468224665706496 Although the game will be presented to the public, the demo won’t be playable. Instead, the audience will see guided live gameplay. We haven’t had solid word on what will be shown in those demos, but CD had this to say in a recent blog post, “We will be taking part in the upcoming edition of E3, which is shaping up to be the most important fair in CD PROJEKT’s history.” Those are some pretty big words so it’s likely we’ll get some significant info on the game. Halo Infinite, Gears 5 and 12 Other Xbox Exclusives You may get deja vu from this quote from Microsoft. “This will be our biggest E3 presence ever and we can’t wait to share more about what we’ve got up our sleeves for the future,” said Will Tuttle, the Xbox Wire Editor in Chief earlier this year. Microsoft reportedly has 14 first-party games for E3. Included in that bunch are Halo Infinite and Gears of War 5. Microsoft announced the next installment of their flagship series last year and said it would be “greatest adventure yet." Halo Infinite deviates a bit from the rest of the games in the franchise, or at least that’s the sense we get from the announcement trailer since it showed off a game engine demonstration instead of straight story. Our prediction from 2018 was that “the new title might be willing to explore beyond the series' traditional linear FPS action, or at least offer a significant new spin.” Gears of War stands out as another storied series that has its roots firmly staked in Xbox. In 2018, we saw the announcement trailer for Gears of War 5 which unlike Halo Infinite seemed to stick to the formula. Except for the deviation of the main character Kait Diaz, who is the first female protagonist of the franchise. We will most likely receive more details on gameplay and a release date at E3. As far as the other 12 games, we don’t have solid details. However, Microsoft acquired some new studios since 2018 and titles are likely to come from there. Pokémon Sword and Shield, Animal Crossing and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate DLC Pokémon Sword and Shield is the eighth generation Pokémon game fans have been drooling over. It will be a full main series game on the Switch that explores the new region of Galar. We’ve seen the three starters, Grookey the grass type, Scorbunny the fire bunny, and Sobble the water lizard. We’ve also seen gameplay which doesn’t seem radically different than Sun and Moon from the 3DS era. Luckily we won’t have to wait until E3 because a Nintendo Pokémon Direct happened on June 5. There we got a further look at new Pokémon, Wooloo the precious, Gossifleur and evolution Eldegoss aka walking embodiments of springtime, Corviknight the badass steel taxi and Drednaw our water/rock fanged turtle. Of course, we got to the Sword and Shield based legendaries as well, Zacian the sword puppy and Zamazenta the shield. It was confirmed that the camera would be controllable, a first for the mainline games. We were introduced to some new battle mechanics as well. The biggest (pun intended) being Dynamax which turn the mons into huge versions of themselves. That played into the raid boss feature where teams of local or online players can take on Dynamax Pokémon. Sword and shield comes out this year on November 15. The only news of Animal Crossing has been brief. But hey, at least we know it exists. In the announcement trailer for the game, we see a bleary-eyed Tom Nook gazing at a blinding computer screen in a dark office (a meta note on game dev crunch perhaps?). Nook babbles for a bit about Isabelle’s cameo in Super Smash, Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp, all his business and such. He says, “I’ve got to make sure everyone has a nice, new place to come home to when they’re ready.” Vague, but then we get an even more vague release schedule of 2019. Hopefully, Nintendo will spare us too much speculation in the meantime and will give us more during their press conference. With the Super Smash Fighter’s Pass we are due new characters to join the Super Smash roster, and what better place to announce the next installments than at E3? We recently got Joker from Persona 5, and Piranha plant back in Feb. Fans are already, understandably, hungry for more. It might be easy to make guesses from some clues about which fighter we’ll see next. And of course, the internet is a flurry of speculation throwing in guesses and fave characters up for nomination. However, some users took that hypothesizing a bit further with what is being dubbed Google Theory. After sifting through Google data people were able to come up with some data. The theory predicts that we’ll get to play as the likes of Banjo & Kazooie, Ryu Hayabusa from Ninja Gaiden and Artorias from Dark Souls. Doom Eternal On the streets of LA you can spot giant murals of doom, Doom Eternal to be specific. Every year, E3 attendees get a preview of the impending festivities with gigantic painted billboards on the near the Figueroa Hotel. This year, the next in the Doom reboot series is the highlight. “Do you want to see hell on earth? We just teased it,” said creative director of id Software Hugo Martin when Doom Eternal was teased at E3 last year. The developer also said the game would be "the next leap in push-forward, first-person combat." Solid details, but we’re still without a release date. Watch Dogs 3 aka Watch Dogs Legion As of June 3, solid details on Watch Dogs 3 were revealed. Thanks to an Amazon leak, we were able to get a name and game description. The game will be Watch Dogs Legion and the game details read, “Watch Dogs Legion is set in a near-future, dystopian version of London.” it continued, “London makes total sense for WD, as the city has one of the highest surveillance levels in the world making this the perfect playground.” Another line said, “play as anyone, Every individual you meet in the open world, has a full set of animations, voice over, character traits and visuals that are generated & guided by gameplay systems.” The listing is gone of course, but the news was confirmed by Kotaku shortly after. Bonus: Rumors The Witcher 3 might be coming to the Switch. Capcom could be working on a Resident Evil 3 Remake. Netflix is going to be at the E3 Coliseum, do they have games in the works? There are very vague rumors of a new Batman game from Rocksteady. The Extra Life E3 2019 content team will be live at the show June 9-13 and covering all that the show has to offer. Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games.
  4. E3 is right around the corner, accelerating towards us at an alarming pace that seems to increase every year. But no problem! Extra Life has your back. We collected the games and dlc that we expect to see at this year’s show and the rumors that we’ve heard. E3 runs from Tuesday, June 11 to Thursday, June 13. Before things even start though, plenty of gaming news drops via press conferences and events. It all can add up to a lot to keep track of surrounding gaming's biggest event. During the show, keep your social channels tuned to Extra Life’s social channels for updates from the show floor. Going to E3? Visit the Extra Life booth! The Press Conferences Before and during E3, many companies hold press conferences. These media events are the place for companies to showcase the upcoming year’s releases and build the hype. Many take the whole year right after the previous E3 to plan and offer extravagant and flashy presentations. Some devs/publishers hold them live and some like Nintendo or Devolver opt-in for pre-recordings. If we, the audience, get very lucky, we also experience lovely gems of human awkwardness. The conferences can be viewed on various streaming mediums. All of the times below are U.S. Pacific Time. Sunday, June 9 Microsoft 1:00 PM Bethesda 5:30 PM Devolver Digital 7:00 PM Monday, June 10 PC Gaming Show 10:00 AM Limited Run Games 12:00 PM Ubisoft 1:00 PM Kinda Funny Games Showcase 4:30 PM Square Enix 6:00 PM Tuesday, June 11 Nintendo 9:00 AM No Sony, What about Death Stranding? You might have noticed that PlayStation wasn’t listed above. That’s because Sony made an industry-shaking decision to not attend E3 this year. This marks the first year that Sony won’t attend the conference in the 25 years of the conference. News of the decision broke last year via a Kotaku report. Sony released a statement, “PlayStation fans mean the world to us and we always want to innovate, think differently and experiment with new ways to delight gamers.” Sony continued, “as a result, we have decided not to participate in E3 in 2019. We are exploring new and familiar ways to engage our community in 2019 and can’t wait to share our plans with you.” So about those said plans, it’s speculated that Sony is gearing up for the release of the PlayStation 5 and possibly some next-gen VR hardware. The PS5 has a release window of Spring 2020 or later. An update on The Last of Us 2 and Death Stranding might not come directly from E3, but it’s likely Sony will ride the E3 hype wave with announcements adjacent to the event. On May 29, Kojima Productions released the Official Release Date Trailer for Death Stranding. Through the video, we received a slew of new details on the story, saw more gameplay, and got that coveted release date. The game will release later this year on November 8 exclusively to the PS4. FF7 Remake and The Avengers Project With Square Enix confirmed for E3, the Final Fantasy remake will most likely shine as a highlighted part of the company’s booth. We haven’t gotten a release date for the game. It was previously announced that the game would be released in an episodic format, so we may at least see the release date for that first installment. The latest we’ve seen from the FFVII front came in the form of a new trailer released on May 9. In that trailer, we got a look at more story and gameplay with a focus on Aerith, one of the iconic protagonists of FFVII. In the video description, there was a vague but promising note, “more details coming June 2019.” We got a teaser on a project partnering Marvel with Square Enix back in 2017. Then after some wait, the two companies revealed The Avengers Project announcement trailer. With a name like that, with an unfinalized game title, it was pretty obvious we would be waiting for a while until we’d actually see this game. On May 29, it was confirmed that The Avengers Project would be at E3 via a tweet from account @PlayAvengers. “Tune into Square Enix Live E3 2019 for the worldwide reveal of Marvel’s Avengers,” said the tweet. So hey, we’ve got a name now and confirmation that the game does indeed still exist. Cyberpunk 2077 At E3 2018, Cyberpunk 2077, the newest IP from The Witcher 3 developer CD Projekt Red, kept mystique by remaining behind closed doors. Later on, we were able to see the 48-minute demo trailer that was reserved for select eyes. This year though, CD Projekt Red is ready to bare all on the public floor. https://mobile.twitter.com/AdamBadowski/status/1131468224665706496 Although the game will be presented to the public, the demo won’t be playable. Instead, the audience will see guided live gameplay. We haven’t had solid word on what will be shown in those demos, but CD had this to say in a recent blog post, “We will be taking part in the upcoming edition of E3, which is shaping up to be the most important fair in CD PROJEKT’s history.” Those are some pretty big words so it’s likely we’ll get some significant info on the game. Halo Infinite, Gears 5 and 12 Other Xbox Exclusives You may get deja vu from this quote from Microsoft. “This will be our biggest E3 presence ever and we can’t wait to share more about what we’ve got up our sleeves for the future,” said Will Tuttle, the Xbox Wire Editor in Chief earlier this year. Microsoft reportedly has 14 first-party games for E3. Included in that bunch are Halo Infinite and Gears of War 5. Microsoft announced the next installment of their flagship series last year and said it would be “greatest adventure yet." Halo Infinite deviates a bit from the rest of the games in the franchise, or at least that’s the sense we get from the announcement trailer since it showed off a game engine demonstration instead of straight story. Our prediction from 2018 was that “the new title might be willing to explore beyond the series' traditional linear FPS action, or at least offer a significant new spin.” Gears of War stands out as another storied series that has its roots firmly staked in Xbox. In 2018, we saw the announcement trailer for Gears of War 5 which unlike Halo Infinite seemed to stick to the formula. Except for the deviation of the main character Kait Diaz, who is the first female protagonist of the franchise. We will most likely receive more details on gameplay and a release date at E3. As far as the other 12 games, we don’t have solid details. However, Microsoft acquired some new studios since 2018 and titles are likely to come from there. Pokémon Sword and Shield, Animal Crossing and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate DLC Pokémon Sword and Shield is the eighth generation Pokémon game fans have been drooling over. It will be a full main series game on the Switch that explores the new region of Galar. We’ve seen the three starters, Grookey the grass type, Scorbunny the fire bunny, and Sobble the water lizard. We’ve also seen gameplay which doesn’t seem radically different than Sun and Moon from the 3DS era. Luckily we won’t have to wait until E3 because a Nintendo Pokémon Direct happened on June 5. There we got a further look at new Pokémon, Wooloo the precious, Gossifleur and evolution Eldegoss aka walking embodiments of springtime, Corviknight the badass steel taxi and Drednaw our water/rock fanged turtle. Of course, we got to the Sword and Shield based legendaries as well, Zacian the sword puppy and Zamazenta the shield. It was confirmed that the camera would be controllable, a first for the mainline games. We were introduced to some new battle mechanics as well. The biggest (pun intended) being Dynamax which turn the mons into huge versions of themselves. That played into the raid boss feature where teams of local or online players can take on Dynamax Pokémon. Sword and shield comes out this year on November 15. The only news of Animal Crossing has been brief. But hey, at least we know it exists. In the announcement trailer for the game, we see a bleary-eyed Tom Nook gazing at a blinding computer screen in a dark office (a meta note on game dev crunch perhaps?). Nook babbles for a bit about Isabelle’s cameo in Super Smash, Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp, all his business and such. He says, “I’ve got to make sure everyone has a nice, new place to come home to when they’re ready.” Vague, but then we get an even more vague release schedule of 2019. Hopefully, Nintendo will spare us too much speculation in the meantime and will give us more during their press conference. With the Super Smash Fighter’s Pass we are due new characters to join the Super Smash roster, and what better place to announce the next installments than at E3? We recently got Joker from Persona 5, and Piranha plant back in Feb. Fans are already, understandably, hungry for more. It might be easy to make guesses from some clues about which fighter we’ll see next. And of course, the internet is a flurry of speculation throwing in guesses and fave characters up for nomination. However, some users took that hypothesizing a bit further with what is being dubbed Google Theory. After sifting through Google data people were able to come up with some data. The theory predicts that we’ll get to play as the likes of Banjo & Kazooie, Ryu Hayabusa from Ninja Gaiden and Artorias from Dark Souls. Doom Eternal On the streets of LA you can spot giant murals of doom, Doom Eternal to be specific. Every year, E3 attendees get a preview of the impending festivities with gigantic painted billboards on the near the Figueroa Hotel. This year, the next in the Doom reboot series is the highlight. “Do you want to see hell on earth? We just teased it,” said creative director of id Software Hugo Martin when Doom Eternal was teased at E3 last year. The developer also said the game would be "the next leap in push-forward, first-person combat." Solid details, but we’re still without a release date. Watch Dogs 3 aka Watch Dogs Legion As of June 3, solid details on Watch Dogs 3 were revealed. Thanks to an Amazon leak, we were able to get a name and game description. The game will be Watch Dogs Legion and the game details read, “Watch Dogs Legion is set in a near-future, dystopian version of London.” it continued, “London makes total sense for WD, as the city has one of the highest surveillance levels in the world making this the perfect playground.” Another line said, “play as anyone, Every individual you meet in the open world, has a full set of animations, voice over, character traits and visuals that are generated & guided by gameplay systems.” The listing is gone of course, but the news was confirmed by Kotaku shortly after. Bonus: Rumors The Witcher 3 might be coming to the Switch. Capcom could be working on a Resident Evil 3 Remake. Netflix is going to be at the E3 Coliseum, do they have games in the works? There are very vague rumors of a new Batman game from Rocksteady. The Extra Life E3 2019 content team will be live at the show June 9-13 and covering all that the show has to offer. Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games. View full article
  5. Detective Pikachu had its opening weekend and was able to pull its weight against heavy hitter Avengers: Endgame. In retrospect, that shouldn't be totally surprising. The Pokémon brand certainly stands out as one of the biggest contributors to the box office achievement of Detective Pikachu. That logo alone almost guarantees that a product will grab some attention. Add the sly but charming leading man Ryan Reynolds, fresh off of his turn as the wise-cracking Deadpool, into the mix and an older audience will come to see it out of curiosity. The family-friendly rating ensures that people of all ages will frequent their local theater to take in the unique attraction of a live-action Pokémon film. However, the true secret to Detective Pikachu's success isn't the fact that it branched off of a ridiculously popular franchise. No, the secret is the respect paid to the multi-generations of fans who grew up with Pokémon by their side. This elevates the film to that rare next level; Detective Pikachu stands as a truly decent video game movie. Don’t worry, this review is spoiler-free. One of the best moments in Detective Pikachu occurs within the first few minutes. The camera soars above the landscape of an alternate universe, unassuming, like any other movie. However, a key detail stands out. The birds flying alongside the camera are Pidgeots. The camera doesn’t highlight the unassuming winged Pokémon, but instead, the fictitious creatures blend in with the scenery. They look like they belong there, as real as any sparrow or falcon. That sense of grounded belonging hit me hard. I'm definitely a Pokémon nerd, and I'm totally not ashamed to say that seeing this made me tear up, just a little. Detective Pikachu originated as a 3DS title of the same name that released in Japan in 2016. The handheld game released worldwide in 2018, but did little to impress me. The first trailer for Detective Pikachu failed to grip me in a similar manner. The premise of a crime-solving, talking Pikachu seemed like an odd choice for such a big budget film. Then there were the character designs. Oh wow, the character designs. Being a live-action affair, Detective Pikachu’s aesthetic choice for the Pokémon that live alongside the human population was to ground them in reality as much as possible. The first trailer showing off these designs didn’t hit me right. Jigglypuff's characteristic innocent blue eyes melted away into horrifically realistic, veiny orbs. Mr. Mime... Mr. Mimed. It all seemed seconds away from a fatal misstep, one that would lead these companion creatures I've known and loved for so long down a dark and creepy path. However, I am happy to report that director Rob Letterman was able keep the production on the tightrope. Detective Pikachu never slips from the delicate balance that seemed impossible when I first saw the trailer. Much of that is due to the vital piece of the puzzle prevailing in every scene, the Pokémon themselves. Charmander has scales? Wild! While some Pokémon were certainly disturbing, the steady drip of new designs and iconic Pokémon moments kept me curious and engaged. As a lifelong Pokemon fan, I wanted, nay needed more. Almost the entirety of Detective Pikachu takes place in and around Ryme City. The urban locale brings all kinds of people and Pokémon into close proximity, allowing it to become a character in its own right. The first taste of the city gives the audience an onslaught of Easter Eggs, with Pokémon from across all generations of the games filling in almost every nook and cranny. As a dedicated Pokémon fan, it occurred to me that this might be what heaven looks like. Even if someone hadn’t ever played a Pokémon game before, the incredible sights of Ryme City should prove to be delightful. The special effects provide a seamless visual experience with a steady drip-feed of wonder. It took a lot of love and a substantial understanding of Pokémon’s appeal to create a world this full of marvels. The plot of Detective Pikachu revolves around Tim Goodman, a young man who encounters a talking Pikachu shortly after the disappearance of his father, Harry. Justice Smith does an admirable job as Goodman, managing to hold his own playing alongside Ryan Reynolds as the titular detective. The two go through a bonding arc over the course of their adventures together that's surprisingly heartwarming. However, the plot becomes secondary to the magical world of the film. Detective Pikachu stands as a great achievement. It manages to be both a vehicle for nostalgia, effectively conveying the magic that made Pokémon great in the first place while introducing a whole new generation to the franchise. The filmmakers crafted a world where the fluffiness of childhood continues, but holds just enough darkness around the edges to feel real. This is a place where whimsical creatures can be both adorable distractions and participants in a gritty criminal underworld. It’s a world with more similarities to our own that operates with a freedom that many will find a refreshing change of pace from the typical sanded polish of Nintendo’s titles. As strange as it might sound for a film about a talking yellow mouse voiced by Ryan Reynolds, Pokémon has become a bit more real thanks to Detective Pikachu. Conclusion: Ryme City and its environs become an opportunity to see the Pokémon you’ve always imagined coming to life. It’s a magical opportunity that taps into what made the games so alluring as a kid. Pokémon gripped me in part because it seemed like an ideal world. It was a place where the worst thing that could happen would be a trip to the local Pokémon Center or a missed opportunity to catch that one rare Pokémon. Plus, who doesn’t dream of going on an adventure with a magical best friend? Rob Letterman as well as seemingly everyone working on Detective Pikachu understood this, using the live-action of the film to bridge the gap between that dream and reality. It’s no exaggeration to say that Detective Pikachu helped to heal my cynical Millennial soul, if only just a little. If that isn't an endorsement, then I don't know what else could be. Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games
  6. Detective Pikachu had its opening weekend and was able to pull its weight against heavy hitter Avengers Endgame. Not totally surprising. This movie has quite a few things going for it that contributed to that success. Pokémon, duh, anything with that logo is gonna grab some attention. Sly but charming lead man Ryan Reynolds, that family-friendly rating etc. etc. But what makes this movie successful isn't just the fact that it's branched off of a ridiculously popular franchise, but the respect paid to the multi-generations of fans. This brings it to that rare next level and makes it a truly decent video game movie. One of the best moments in the movie for me (don't worry, this review will be spoiler-free) lies within the first few minutes. The camera soared above this alternate universe, unassuming, like any other movie. However, a key detail stood out. The birds that flew alongside the camera were Pidgeots, unassuming Pokemon themselves, but they blended in so well they become a natural part of the scenery. I'm definitely a Pokémon nerd, and I'm totally not ashamed to say that seeing this made me tear up, just a little. As a lifelong Pokemon fan, I wanted, nay needed more. Charmander with scales? Whaaaa? But let's back up a little first. When the first trailer came out for this movie it didn't exactly grip me. Detective Pikachu, the game, wasn't one that I had been particularly invested in. It seemed like an odd choice for such a big budget film. And then there were the character designs. Oh wow, the character designs. Jigglypuff's characteristic innocent blue eyes melted away into horrifically realistic veiny orbs. Mr. Mime... Mr. Mimed. It all seemed seconds away from a fatal misstep, one that would lead these companion creatures I've known and loved for so long down a dark and creepy path. But that vital piece of the puzzle prevailed, the Pokémon piece. It kept me curious and ensured that I would indeed see this movie. It's Pikachu, with Ryan Reynolds voice! When we enter the main location for the movie, Ryme City, we the audience receive an onslaught of Easter Eggs. There are Pokémon from all generations EVERYWHERE. I think this is what heaven looks like. In all seriousness though, it is an amazing sight to see. The wonder is relentless, it's seamless. Pokémon are as much a part of the city as the people who inhabit it. It took a lot of love to create a world this full and well, possible. The plot becomes secondary to the magical world they were able to create. That same magic is what made me fall in love with Pokemon in the first place. Pokémon gripped in part me because it seemed like an ideal world. Going on an adventure with a magical best friend? Heck yea! So bridging that gap to reality helps heal my cynical Millenial soul just a little. Detective Pikachu has shown the audience that the franchise has grown up with them. Instead of being perpetually stuck at 10, fans were finally allowed to see Pokémon in their world. A gritty world with crime, underground fighting, street drugs. They are allowed to exist in a world that has more similarities to our own than the usual polish that we get from Nintendo. Because of that, Pokémon become just a little more real. Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games View full article
  7. Detective Pikachu returns in a lengthy trailer focusing on the trusty pokémon detective, his human companion, and the mystery they both set out to solve. If the hype surrounding the film can be used to judge how well it will do, expect it to be huge. Detective Pikachu tells the story of Tim Goodman (Justice Smith), a young man who grew up wanting to become a pokémon trainer, but soured on the idea along the way. As the film begins, he's an unhappy, mild-mannered telemarketer (or at least doing a job that looks very similar to telemarketing). Tim's basically the vision of what happens to trainers in the pokémon world when they can't become successful adventurers. That is, until the night he comes home to find a talking pikachu (Ryan Reynolds)with a caffeine addiction in his apartment. With Tim's father, a legendary police officer on the Rhyme City force, missing, it's up to the unlikely duo to solve the disappearance. The new trailer delves into the backstory of the titular pikachu detective. We learn that he suffers from amnesia and woke up on a lonely country road alone. The only clue he has to go on is the name Harry Goodman written on the inside of his adorable Sherlock Holmes hat (incidentally, that style of hat is called a deerstalker, but it just seems wrong to say that pikachu wears a deerstalker). That leads him to Tim's apartment and the two pair up to find Harry, Tim's missing father. Their journey takes them on a collision course with a mysterious woman, a seedy underground fighting ring run by some shady characters, and a special ops squad of Greninja. Oh, and Mewtwo appears as a possible antagonist. Now, aside from these two trailers and a selection of tidbits revealed in interviews, details on the story beyond that are scarce. So, here are a few of my theories: Tim's dad got wrapped up in a large scale investigation of Team Rocket. My guess is it's going to be Team Rocket rather than one of the other criminal teams that have existed across the Pokémon franchise because of Mewtwo and its history of being involved with Team Rocket. Team Rocket's lower members participate and profit off of the operation of underground pokémon battle arenas that aren't as safe as mainstream ones. Getting wrapped up in all of this, Harry Goodman stumbled across evidence of forbidden experimentation going on at a secret lab, which can be seen during one of the rapid cut moments in the second trailer. However, Harry was discovered and used as fodder in the experiment - which transformed him into a pokémon, the adorable detective himself. This isn't the first time this has happened in Pokémon history and I'm going to guess there will be some nod to Pokémon Red & Blue's continuity with the lead scientist being named Bill. I'm also going to go out on a limb and guess that the Flareon we see form out of light on what appears to be an opulent desk is Giovanni, the leader of Team Rocket, using the refined transformation tech (which I further guess is based off of the pokémon Ditto's abilities). Flareon also might just be evolving or coming out of a pokéball, but the framing and animation implies that it might be something more important. The mysterious woman we see adventuring with Tim is likely a scientist who escaped from the lab with some hidden agenda either related to the good detective or Mewtwo itself. I'm leaning toward the Mewtwo possibility because she appears to have a psyduck companion and that's one of the few major psychic pokémon we see in the trailers. This new trailer comes on the heels of the announcement that The Pokémon Company would also be releasing a complete remake of the first Pokémon film, Pokémon: The Movie: Mewtwo Strikes Back, using CGI called Mewtwo Strikes Back: Evolution. The remake is slated for release on July 12 of this year. Detective Pikachu releases in theaters later this year on May 10. What are some of your theories for the movie so far? Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games!
  8. Detective Pikachu returns in a lengthy trailer focusing on the trusty pokémon detective, his human companion, and the mystery they both set out to solve. If the hype surrounding the film can be used to judge how well it will do, expect it to be huge. Detective Pikachu tells the story of Tim Goodman (Justice Smith), a young man who grew up wanting to become a pokémon trainer, but soured on the idea along the way. As the film begins, he's an unhappy, mild-mannered telemarketer (or at least doing a job that looks very similar to telemarketing). Tim's basically the vision of what happens to trainers in the pokémon world when they can't become successful adventurers. That is, until the night he comes home to find a talking pikachu (Ryan Reynolds)with a caffeine addiction in his apartment. With Tim's father, a legendary police officer on the Rhyme City force, missing, it's up to the unlikely duo to solve the disappearance. The new trailer delves into the backstory of the titular pikachu detective. We learn that he suffers from amnesia and woke up on a lonely country road alone. The only clue he has to go on is the name Harry Goodman written on the inside of his adorable Sherlock Holmes hat (incidentally, that style of hat is called a deerstalker, but it just seems wrong to say that pikachu wears a deerstalker). That leads him to Tim's apartment and the two pair up to find Harry, Tim's missing father. Their journey takes them on a collision course with a mysterious woman, a seedy underground fighting ring run by some shady characters, and a special ops squad of Greninja. Oh, and Mewtwo appears as a possible antagonist. Now, aside from these two trailers and a selection of tidbits revealed in interviews, details on the story beyond that are scarce. So, here are a few of my theories: Tim's dad got wrapped up in a large scale investigation of Team Rocket. My guess is it's going to be Team Rocket rather than one of the other criminal teams that have existed across the Pokémon franchise because of Mewtwo and its history of being involved with Team Rocket. Team Rocket's lower members participate and profit off of the operation of underground pokémon battle arenas that aren't as safe as mainstream ones. Getting wrapped up in all of this, Harry Goodman stumbled across evidence of forbidden experimentation going on at a secret lab, which can be seen during one of the rapid cut moments in the second trailer. However, Harry was discovered and used as fodder in the experiment - which transformed him into a pokémon, the adorable detective himself. This isn't the first time this has happened in Pokémon history and I'm going to guess there will be some nod to Pokémon Red & Blue's continuity with the lead scientist being named Bill. I'm also going to go out on a limb and guess that the Flareon we see form out of light on what appears to be an opulent desk is Giovanni, the leader of Team Rocket, using the refined transformation tech (which I further guess is based off of the pokémon Ditto's abilities). Flareon also might just be evolving or coming out of a pokéball, but the framing and animation implies that it might be something more important. The mysterious woman we see adventuring with Tim is likely a scientist who escaped from the lab with some hidden agenda either related to the good detective or Mewtwo itself. I'm leaning toward the Mewtwo possibility because she appears to have a psyduck companion and that's one of the few major psychic pokémon we see in the trailers. This new trailer comes on the heels of the announcement that The Pokémon Company would also be releasing a complete remake of the first Pokémon film, Pokémon: The Movie: Mewtwo Strikes Back, using CGI called Mewtwo Strikes Back: Evolution. The remake is slated for release on July 12 of this year. Detective Pikachu releases in theaters later this year on May 10. What are some of your theories for the movie so far? Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! View full article
  9. The first show recorded in 2019, which means it's time to look back on the past year and talk about the best games of 2018. What moved us this year? What pushed us to think? What helped made us better people? Talking about what we experienced and what mattered to us will always be a worthwhile conversation to have, and 2018 was full of phenomenal games. What about you? Share your favorite game of the year in the comments! Each week we will be tackling a video game, old or new, that at least one of us believes deserves to stand as one of the greatest games of all time. We'll dive into its history, development, and gameplay, while trying to argue for or against the game of the week. Sometimes we will be in harmonious agreement, other times we might be fighting a bitter battle to the very end. However each episode shakes out, we hope that everyone who listens will find the show entertaining and informative. Outro music: Skies of Arcadia 'Valhorteka' by Garpocalypse feat. Darkflamewolf (https://ocremix.org/remix/OCR03836) You can download or listen to the podcast over on Soundcloud, our hosting site, and iTunes. A YouTube version is available, as well! If you want to have your opinion heard on air, share your opinion in the comments, follow the show on Twitter, and participate in the weekly polls: @BestGamesPeriod New episodes of The Best Games Period will be released every Monday Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games!
  10. The first show recorded in 2019, which means it's time to look back on the past year and talk about the best games of 2018. What moved us this year? What pushed us to think? What helped made us better people? Talking about what we experienced and what mattered to us will always be a worthwhile conversation to have, and 2018 was full of phenomenal games. What about you? Share your favorite game of the year in the comments! Each week we will be tackling a video game, old or new, that at least one of us believes deserves to stand as one of the greatest games of all time. We'll dive into its history, development, and gameplay, while trying to argue for or against the game of the week. Sometimes we will be in harmonious agreement, other times we might be fighting a bitter battle to the very end. However each episode shakes out, we hope that everyone who listens will find the show entertaining and informative. Outro music: Skies of Arcadia 'Valhorteka' by Garpocalypse feat. Darkflamewolf (https://ocremix.org/remix/OCR03836) You can download or listen to the podcast over on Soundcloud, our hosting site, and iTunes. A YouTube version is available, as well! If you want to have your opinion heard on air, share your opinion in the comments, follow the show on Twitter, and participate in the weekly polls: @BestGamesPeriod New episodes of The Best Games Period will be released every Monday Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! View full article
  11. Mewtwo returns to the spotlight in an upcoming reimagined take on the original Pokémon film, Pokémon: The Movie: Mewtwo Strikes Back. Released in 1998 in Japan and 1999 in North America to immense commercial success, its $30 million budget bringing in over $160 million. This spurred the creation of an ongoing film franchise of which the upcoming remake will be the 22nd. Pokémon: The Movie: Mewtwo Strikes Back tells the story of Mewtwo, a clone of the legendary Pokémon Mew. Armed with immensely powerful psychic abilities, the creature is used by Giovanni, the leader of Team Rocket, to absolutely obliterate anyone who stands in the evil organization's way. That is, until Mewtwo goes rogue and decides to take over the world. He lures trainers from all across the land to participate in a Pokémon tournament. Of course, it's all a ruse to use cloning technology to create his own army of powerful Pokémon. Ash Ketchum, the long-time protagonist of the Pokémon anime series finds himself and his friends caught up in Mewtwo's schemes and takes it upon himself to stop the Pokémon's ambitions. We don't know a whole lot about the upcoming remake, Mewtwo Strikes Back: Evolution, though the trailer posted today on the official Pokémon YouTube channel gives a feel for what the CG of the film will look like. Many fans have been comparing the cleaner, smoother look of the animations against the upcoming Detective Pikachu film's darker and more grounded visual approach to Pokémon. So far, there doesn't seem to be a consensus as to whether this is a better or worse direction to take CG Pokémon. With both Detective Pikachu and Mewtwo Strikes Back: Evolution releasing in 2019, we're about to have a year full of Pokémon. Thankfully, the two films won't be competing against one another as Detective Pikachu releases on May 10, 2019 and Mewtwo Strikes Back: Evolution will be hitting theaters in July. However, it will certainly be interesting to see how audiences respond to two very different visual approaches to the traditionally 2D anime series. I won't lie; this certainly scratches a nostalgia itch I didn't know I had. There was a lot of potential for the original Pokémon film that got muddled in its North American adaptation with cut scenes and altered dialogue that made Mewtwo more clearly into a villain than the morally ambiguous antagonist presented in the Japanese release. Also, the original film only had a runtime of 75 minutes due to the Pikachu short that showed before it in theaters. It's more than likely that Mewtwo Strikes Back: Evolution will expand on that story and better able to deliver on the original vision of the film than the version North American audiences received in 1999. Color me cautiously optimistic. Mewtwo Strikes Back: Evolution will release on July 12, 2019. Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! View full article
  12. Mewtwo returns to the spotlight in an upcoming reimagined take on the original Pokémon film, Pokémon: The Movie: Mewtwo Strikes Back. Released in 1998 in Japan and 1999 in North America to immense commercial success, its $30 million budget bringing in over $160 million. This spurred the creation of an ongoing film franchise of which the upcoming remake will be the 22nd. Pokémon: The Movie: Mewtwo Strikes Back tells the story of Mewtwo, a clone of the legendary Pokémon Mew. Armed with immensely powerful psychic abilities, the creature is used by Giovanni, the leader of Team Rocket, to absolutely obliterate anyone who stands in the evil organization's way. That is, until Mewtwo goes rogue and decides to take over the world. He lures trainers from all across the land to participate in a Pokémon tournament. Of course, it's all a ruse to use cloning technology to create his own army of powerful Pokémon. Ash Ketchum, the long-time protagonist of the Pokémon anime series finds himself and his friends caught up in Mewtwo's schemes and takes it upon himself to stop the Pokémon's ambitions. We don't know a whole lot about the upcoming remake, Mewtwo Strikes Back: Evolution, though the trailer posted today on the official Pokémon YouTube channel gives a feel for what the CG of the film will look like. Many fans have been comparing the cleaner, smoother look of the animations against the upcoming Detective Pikachu film's darker and more grounded visual approach to Pokémon. So far, there doesn't seem to be a consensus as to whether this is a better or worse direction to take CG Pokémon. With both Detective Pikachu and Mewtwo Strikes Back: Evolution releasing in 2019, we're about to have a year full of Pokémon. Thankfully, the two films won't be competing against one another as Detective Pikachu releases on May 10, 2019 and Mewtwo Strikes Back: Evolution will be hitting theaters in July. However, it will certainly be interesting to see how audiences respond to two very different visual approaches to the traditionally 2D anime series. I won't lie; this certainly scratches a nostalgia itch I didn't know I had. There was a lot of potential for the original Pokémon film that got muddled in its North American adaptation with cut scenes and altered dialogue that made Mewtwo more clearly into a villain than the morally ambiguous antagonist presented in the Japanese release. Also, the original film only had a runtime of 75 minutes due to the Pikachu short that showed before it in theaters. It's more than likely that Mewtwo Strikes Back: Evolution will expand on that story and better able to deliver on the original vision of the film than the version North American audiences received in 1999. Color me cautiously optimistic. Mewtwo Strikes Back: Evolution will release on July 12, 2019. Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games!
  13. Wow, with all the hubbub around Pokémon Let's Go it can be easy to forget that the original Pokémon games that started it all released 20 years ago (or 22 years ago in Japan)! The phenomenon of pocket monsters continues to this day and seems to be losing very little steam. It has proven to be one of Nintendo's enduring juggernauts able to spin off into everything from disaster relief games to live-action sleuthing films. This week we invited Kevin Slackie on the show to talk about both the original Game Boy titles and their newest incarnation in Pokémon Let's Go! Also, apparently Jessie and James of Team Rocket fame are canonically 15 years old? There was a lot of weird stuff swirling around OG Pokémon. And now to pose a question to all of you Pokémon Let's Go players out there: If you could only have one and the other was erased from existence, either Pokémon Red & Blue or Pokémon Let's Go, which would you hold onto? You can (and should) follow Kevin Slackie over on Twitter: @KSlackie Each week we will be tackling a video game, old or new, that at least one of us believes deserves to stand as one of the greatest games of all time. We'll dive into its history, development, and gameplay, while trying to argue for or against the game of the week. Sometimes we will be in harmonious agreement, other times we might be fighting a bitter battle to the very end. However each episode shakes out, we hope that everyone who listens will find the show entertaining and informative. Outro music: Pokémon Red 'Moondrops' by Sockpuppet (http://ocremix.org/remix/OCR02514) You can download or listen to the podcast over on Soundcloud, our hosting site, and iTunes. A YouTube version is available, as well! If you want to have your opinion heard on air, share your opinion in the comments, follow the show on Twitter, and participate in the weekly polls: @BestGamesPeriod New episodes of The Best Games Period will be released every Monday Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! View full article
  14. Wow, with all the hubbub around Pokémon Let's Go it can be easy to forget that the original Pokémon games that started it all released 20 years ago (or 22 years ago in Japan)! The phenomenon of pocket monsters continues to this day and seems to be losing very little steam. It has proven to be one of Nintendo's enduring juggernauts able to spin off into everything from disaster relief games to live-action sleuthing films. This week we invited Kevin Slackie on the show to talk about both the original Game Boy titles and their newest incarnation in Pokémon Let's Go! Also, apparently Jessie and James of Team Rocket fame are canonically 15 years old? There was a lot of weird stuff swirling around OG Pokémon. And now to pose a question to all of you Pokémon Let's Go players out there: If you could only have one and the other was erased from existence, either Pokémon Red & Blue or Pokémon Let's Go, which would you hold onto? You can (and should) follow Kevin Slackie over on Twitter: @KSlackie Each week we will be tackling a video game, old or new, that at least one of us believes deserves to stand as one of the greatest games of all time. We'll dive into its history, development, and gameplay, while trying to argue for or against the game of the week. Sometimes we will be in harmonious agreement, other times we might be fighting a bitter battle to the very end. However each episode shakes out, we hope that everyone who listens will find the show entertaining and informative. Outro music: Pokémon Red 'Moondrops' by Sockpuppet (http://ocremix.org/remix/OCR02514) You can download or listen to the podcast over on Soundcloud, our hosting site, and iTunes. A YouTube version is available, as well! If you want to have your opinion heard on air, share your opinion in the comments, follow the show on Twitter, and participate in the weekly polls: @BestGamesPeriod New episodes of The Best Games Period will be released every Monday Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games!
  15. The big things in Pokémon right now are the dual Pokémon titles: Pokémon Let's Go Eevee and Pokémon Let's Go Pikachu. The two games are remakes of the original Red, Blue, and Yellow generation of the Pokémon franchise with modern twists that incorporate streamlined elements from the Pokémon Go mobile game that swept across the globe. Naomi Lugo offers her thoughts on the two new games while also recalling what made the original generation so great and magical for an entire world of kids. With schedules being what they are, sometimes coordinating a full episode of The Best Games Period can be difficult. When we can't have a proper discussion, we will be breaking off to do these shorter mini-casts, Honorable Mentions, to talk about fringe games that we might not otherwise be able to talk about on a full episode. Outro music: Pokémon Red/Blue/Yellow 'The Mighty Mighty Pokémon' by Level 99 (http://missingno.ocremix.org/music.html) You can download or listen to the podcast over on Soundcloud, our hosting site, and iTunes. A YouTube version is available, as well! If you want to have your opinion heard on air, share your opinion in the comments, follow the show on Twitter, and participate in the weekly polls: @BestGamesPeriod New episodes of The Best Games Period will be released every Monday Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games!
  16. The big things in Pokémon right now are the dual Pokémon titles: Pokémon Let's Go Eevee and Pokémon Let's Go Pikachu. The two games are remakes of the original Red, Blue, and Yellow generation of the Pokémon franchise with modern twists that incorporate streamlined elements from the Pokémon Go mobile game that swept across the globe. Naomi Lugo offers her thoughts on the two new games while also recalling what made the original generation so great and magical for an entire world of kids. With schedules being what they are, sometimes coordinating a full episode of The Best Games Period can be difficult. When we can't have a proper discussion, we will be breaking off to do these shorter mini-casts, Honorable Mentions, to talk about fringe games that we might not otherwise be able to talk about on a full episode. Outro music: Pokémon Red/Blue/Yellow 'The Mighty Mighty Pokémon' by Level 99 (http://missingno.ocremix.org/music.html) You can download or listen to the podcast over on Soundcloud, our hosting site, and iTunes. A YouTube version is available, as well! If you want to have your opinion heard on air, share your opinion in the comments, follow the show on Twitter, and participate in the weekly polls: @BestGamesPeriod New episodes of The Best Games Period will be released every Monday Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! View full article
  17. The fifth generation of the Pokémon franchise did something unheard of - it had two direct sequels to the duo of games initially released. In 2011, Pokémon Black and White introduced the world the the new region of Unova, a land full of never before seen Pokémon. It also spun a tale involving the dastardly Team Plasma... that didn't completely end with the completion of either game. Instead, the story continued in Black 2 and White 2, arguably placing more emphasis on narrative than any Pokémon game before or since. Does the fifth generation of Pokémon stand as the best of them all? This week the show is joined by O'Dell Harmon Jr.! You can (and should) follow him over on Twitter: @ODellHarmonJr Be sure to check out his podcast, Full Circle, and his content on Game Fanatics! Each week we will be tackling a video game, old or new, that at least one of us believes deserves to stand as one of the greatest games of all time. We'll dive into its history, development, and gameplay, while trying to argue for or against the game of the week. Sometimes we will be in harmonious agreement, other times we might be fighting a bitter battle to the very end. However each episode shakes out, we hope that everyone who listens will find the show entertaining and informative. Outro music: Pokémon X 'Thy Everlasting Winter Wind Blows' by timaeus222 (http://ocremix.org/remix/OCR03531) You can download or listen to the podcast over on Soundcloud, our hosting site, and iTunes. A YouTube version is available, as well! If you want to have your opinion heard on air, share your opinion in the comments, follow the show on Twitter, and participate in the weekly polls: @BestGamesPeriod New episodes of The Best Games Period will be released every Monday Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games!
  18. The fifth generation of the Pokémon franchise did something unheard of - it had two direct sequels to the duo of games initially released. In 2011, Pokémon Black and White introduced the world the the new region of Unova, a land full of never before seen Pokémon. It also spun a tale involving the dastardly Team Plasma... that didn't completely end with the completion of either game. Instead, the story continued in Black 2 and White 2, arguably placing more emphasis on narrative than any Pokémon game before or since. Does the fifth generation of Pokémon stand as the best of them all? This week the show is joined by O'Dell Harmon Jr.! You can (and should) follow him over on Twitter: @ODellHarmonJr Be sure to check out his podcast, Full Circle, and his content on Game Fanatics! Each week we will be tackling a video game, old or new, that at least one of us believes deserves to stand as one of the greatest games of all time. We'll dive into its history, development, and gameplay, while trying to argue for or against the game of the week. Sometimes we will be in harmonious agreement, other times we might be fighting a bitter battle to the very end. However each episode shakes out, we hope that everyone who listens will find the show entertaining and informative. Outro music: Pokémon X 'Thy Everlasting Winter Wind Blows' by timaeus222 (http://ocremix.org/remix/OCR03531) You can download or listen to the podcast over on Soundcloud, our hosting site, and iTunes. A YouTube version is available, as well! If you want to have your opinion heard on air, share your opinion in the comments, follow the show on Twitter, and participate in the weekly polls: @BestGamesPeriod New episodes of The Best Games Period will be released every Monday Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! View full article
  19. The 1999 N64 release of Pokémon Snap catapulted it into instant cult classic status, a position that has only become more entrenched over time in the almost twenty years since its release. The on-rails photography game makes the case for an mechanic that still seems mysteriously underutilized today. It's a fascinating, strange, little game and it has had people wondering for over a decade why we aren't seeing more iterations on the core concept. However, is all of that uniqueness enough to make it one of the best games of all-time? Each week we will be tackling a video game, old or new, that at least one of us believes deserves to stand as one of the greatest games of all time. We'll dive into its history, development, and gameplay, while trying to argue for or against the game of the week. Sometimes we will be in harmonious agreement, other times we might be fighting a bitter battle to the very end. However each episode shakes out, we hope that everyone who listens will find the show entertaining and informative. Outro music: Tyrants: Fight Through Time 'The Vast Glass Orb' by Inrudiment (http://ocremix.org/remix/OCR03806) You can download or listen to the podcast over on Soundcloud, our hosting site, and iTunes. A YouTube version is available, as well! If you want to have your opinion heard on air, share your opinion in the comments, follow the show on Twitter, and participate in the weekly polls: @BestGamesPeriod New episodes of The Best Games Period will be released every Monday Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games!
  20. The 1999 N64 release of Pokémon Snap catapulted it into instant cult classic status, a position that has only become more entrenched over time in the almost twenty years since its release. The on-rails photography game makes the case for an mechanic that still seems mysteriously underutilized today. It's a fascinating, strange, little game and it has had people wondering for over a decade why we aren't seeing more iterations on the core concept. However, is all of that uniqueness enough to make it one of the best games of all-time? Each week we will be tackling a video game, old or new, that at least one of us believes deserves to stand as one of the greatest games of all time. We'll dive into its history, development, and gameplay, while trying to argue for or against the game of the week. Sometimes we will be in harmonious agreement, other times we might be fighting a bitter battle to the very end. However each episode shakes out, we hope that everyone who listens will find the show entertaining and informative. Outro music: Tyrants: Fight Through Time 'The Vast Glass Orb' by Inrudiment (http://ocremix.org/remix/OCR03806) You can download or listen to the podcast over on Soundcloud, our hosting site, and iTunes. A YouTube version is available, as well! If you want to have your opinion heard on air, share your opinion in the comments, follow the show on Twitter, and participate in the weekly polls: @BestGamesPeriod New episodes of The Best Games Period will be released every Monday Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! View full article
  21. When we think gaming, thoughts often go to RPGs, complex sims, real-time strategy, etc. However, those all exist in a virtual world on a screen. These complicated genres grew out of more classic forms as tabletop games, bringing people together and causing table-flipping arguments and memories since the dawn of time. In recognition of the vast world of tabletop gaming, Extra Life hosts Tabletop Appreciation Weekend annually. 2018 marks the fourth year celebrating, but board gaming has been a part of Extra Life since the beginning. On Game Day and during other fundraisers throughout the year, many Extra Lifers raise money by playing games not just on their screens but on the tabletop as well. As a newbie to the world of board gaming, or a long time fan looking to branch out, it might be hard to determine where to start. The list below looks at helping you solve that problem with some of the best games with which you can start. This list just scratches the surface of the vast world of tabletop gaming, so if you have any suggestions, we would love to hear about them in the comments below or on social media. If you post about the festivities, use the hashtag #EXTRALIFETabletop to connect and maybe even find a new passion. Dungeons & Dragons It would be downright irresponsible to create this list and not include Dungeons & Dragons. This game set the foundation for tons of games to follow, tabletop and otherwise. For those unfamiliar with the format, or maybe to clear up some misconceptions, Dungeons & Dragons features role-playing gameplay with many different play styles. Generally, though, players will run through a campaign as laid out by their Dungeon Master (DM). Each player creates their own Player Character (PC) based on either the lore officially created by Wizards of the Coast or the homebrewed variant supplied by the DM. Character creation includes the fantastical race of said character, their skills and combat style, as well as their origin story. Basically, you get to let your imagination go wild making a rad persona and then use the rules to make them a reality within the game. Dungeons & Dragons tends to intimidate first-timers, but if you have any interest in storytelling, and can find a good DM (or become a good DM yourself), Dungeons and Dragons reached classic status for a reason. Magic: The Gathering Another titan in the tabletop world is Magic: the Gathering. Rather than relying solely on your imagination, Magic uses cards that represent many elements within the mystical Planes of that setting (which has recently been announced to be coming to Dungeons & Dragons). The cards include the planeswalkers, beasts, troops, spells, totems and more that fight epic battles against other players. Playstyles can vary greatly due to the different colors of magic represented on each card. These five colors offer players the ability to specialize their tactics or even combine colors to test out their favorite way to play. Magic requires time and dedication, much like any game, but MTG has a great community and you can typically find a player willing to explain more complicated cards. Classic Board Games Yes, this portion of the list includes those classics like Monopoly, Risk and even Candyland if that strikes your fancy. Even the mainstream classics are a great way to game with friends or introduce new people to this style of gaming. These games made it to the wider culture due to one simple fact: People enjoy them. Many Extra Lifers choose to play these games for Game Day to raise funds and have an absolute blast. We salute those of you who stick with the classics. Like the wider format that these board games fall under, this genre spans many playstyles. Some great games to play include card games like Cards Against Humanity or Exploding Kittens. The 2011 release King of Tokyo has seemingly simple gameplay but adds in cards that offer each player different dynamics that keep the game interesting. Settlers of Catan allows for multiple players and has them all struggle to build up their empires from nothing. The classics and more recent popular tabletop games became widely played because people have fun with them, consider adding one to your Game Day line-up to spice things up if you're mostly a digital gamer. The Pokémon Trading Card Game Some people might be taken aback by the Pokémon Trading Card Game appearing in a list of games to get into in 2018, but this serves as a stand-in for all fandoms that have developed collectible card games. In this realm lie games like Yu-Gi-Oh! and the aptly named Final Fantasy Trading Card Game. Basically, if there’s a franchise, it probably has a collectible card game (to name a few that float around out there: American Idol, Dr. Who Buffy the Vampire Slayer and so many more). This makes this genre super inviting for members of many fandoms. The rules all vary, but basically, the goal includes collecting the best cards you can get your hands on so you can battle opponents. The communities for these versus Magic: The Gathering tend to be smaller and harder to find. The fun from collectible card games depends on the player. Some enjoy the hunt for rare cards and collecting rather than playing, while others gather at local games shops to battle. Hey, even Geralt of Rivia plays. Warhammer Warhammer is an incredibly malleable franchise for those who love tabletop gaming. On the one hand, the core Warhammer series function very much like an almost comically dark version of Dungeons & Dragons. On the other, Warhammer 40K takes place roughly 40,000 years after the core fiction in a far-flung future full of lasers, magic, and war. Players of 40K often go all in with miniatures and tactics, as the game combines war strategy with armies of real-life miniatures making it the perfect game for model hobbyists. Different genres exist in the Warhammer universe from the classic fantasy to sci-fi as introduced in Warhammer 40k. Be forewarned, Warhammer and its iterations require a lot of time not only to play, (some games can last longer than a day), but time to create your armies. Miniatures come unpainted, so you’ll literally create your armies, and it’ll take time to strategically compose as well. After creating armies, players set up their miniatures in formations for visual battles on large tabletops. Of all the games on this list, Warhammer 40K might take the longest to get into, but those who find themselves availed of an army of miniature space marines often find the effort to be worth it. How to get started If you’ve got a game picked out, great! You may be wondering “what now?” In addition to stocking the games themselves, local game stores, and occasionally comic shops, have tons of great resources to get started. Maybe you still want to try out a game before fully committing, these shops often times will host community nights where dedicated players come together with complete newbies to run games. Staff at these shops also often have a wealth of information for new players, too. Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games!
  22. When we think gaming, thoughts often go to RPGs, complex sims, real-time strategy, etc. However, those all exist in a virtual world on a screen. These complicated genres grew out of more classic forms as tabletop games, bringing people together and causing table-flipping arguments and memories since the dawn of time. In recognition of the vast world of tabletop gaming, Extra Life hosts Tabletop Appreciation Weekend annually. 2018 marks the fourth year celebrating, but board gaming has been a part of Extra Life since the beginning. On Game Day and during other fundraisers throughout the year, many Extra Lifers raise money by playing games not just on their screens but on the tabletop as well. As a newbie to the world of board gaming, or a long time fan looking to branch out, it might be hard to determine where to start. The list below looks at helping you solve that problem with some of the best games with which you can start. This list just scratches the surface of the vast world of tabletop gaming, so if you have any suggestions, we would love to hear about them in the comments below or on social media. If you post about the festivities, use the hashtag #EXTRALIFETabletop to connect and maybe even find a new passion. Dungeons & Dragons It would be downright irresponsible to create this list and not include Dungeons & Dragons. This game set the foundation for tons of games to follow, tabletop and otherwise. For those unfamiliar with the format, or maybe to clear up some misconceptions, Dungeons & Dragons features role-playing gameplay with many different play styles. Generally, though, players will run through a campaign as laid out by their Dungeon Master (DM). Each player creates their own Player Character (PC) based on either the lore officially created by Wizards of the Coast or the homebrewed variant supplied by the DM. Character creation includes the fantastical race of said character, their skills and combat style, as well as their origin story. Basically, you get to let your imagination go wild making a rad persona and then use the rules to make them a reality within the game. Dungeons & Dragons tends to intimidate first-timers, but if you have any interest in storytelling, and can find a good DM (or become a good DM yourself), Dungeons and Dragons reached classic status for a reason. Magic: The Gathering Another titan in the tabletop world is Magic: the Gathering. Rather than relying solely on your imagination, Magic uses cards that represent many elements within the mystical Planes of that setting (which has recently been announced to be coming to Dungeons & Dragons). The cards include the planeswalkers, beasts, troops, spells, totems and more that fight epic battles against other players. Playstyles can vary greatly due to the different colors of magic represented on each card. These five colors offer players the ability to specialize their tactics or even combine colors to test out their favorite way to play. Magic requires time and dedication, much like any game, but MTG has a great community and you can typically find a player willing to explain more complicated cards. Classic Board Games Yes, this portion of the list includes those classics like Monopoly, Risk and even Candyland if that strikes your fancy. Even the mainstream classics are a great way to game with friends or introduce new people to this style of gaming. These games made it to the wider culture due to one simple fact: People enjoy them. Many Extra Lifers choose to play these games for Game Day to raise funds and have an absolute blast. We salute those of you who stick with the classics. Like the wider format that these board games fall under, this genre spans many playstyles. Some great games to play include card games like Cards Against Humanity or Exploding Kittens. The 2011 release King of Tokyo has seemingly simple gameplay but adds in cards that offer each player different dynamics that keep the game interesting. Settlers of Catan allows for multiple players and has them all struggle to build up their empires from nothing. The classics and more recent popular tabletop games became widely played because people have fun with them, consider adding one to your Game Day line-up to spice things up if you're mostly a digital gamer. The Pokémon Trading Card Game Some people might be taken aback by the Pokémon Trading Card Game appearing in a list of games to get into in 2018, but this serves as a stand-in for all fandoms that have developed collectible card games. In this realm lie games like Yu-Gi-Oh! and the aptly named Final Fantasy Trading Card Game. Basically, if there’s a franchise, it probably has a collectible card game (to name a few that float around out there: American Idol, Dr. Who Buffy the Vampire Slayer and so many more). This makes this genre super inviting for members of many fandoms. The rules all vary, but basically, the goal includes collecting the best cards you can get your hands on so you can battle opponents. The communities for these versus Magic: The Gathering tend to be smaller and harder to find. The fun from collectible card games depends on the player. Some enjoy the hunt for rare cards and collecting rather than playing, while others gather at local games shops to battle. Hey, even Geralt of Rivia plays. Warhammer Warhammer is an incredibly malleable franchise for those who love tabletop gaming. On the one hand, the core Warhammer series function very much like an almost comically dark version of Dungeons & Dragons. On the other, Warhammer 40K takes place roughly 40,000 years after the core fiction in a far-flung future full of lasers, magic, and war. Players of 40K often go all in with miniatures and tactics, as the game combines war strategy with armies of real-life miniatures making it the perfect game for model hobbyists. Different genres exist in the Warhammer universe from the classic fantasy to sci-fi as introduced in Warhammer 40k. Be forewarned, Warhammer and its iterations require a lot of time not only to play, (some games can last longer than a day), but time to create your armies. Miniatures come unpainted, so you’ll literally create your armies, and it’ll take time to strategically compose as well. After creating armies, players set up their miniatures in formations for visual battles on large tabletops. Of all the games on this list, Warhammer 40K might take the longest to get into, but those who find themselves availed of an army of miniature space marines often find the effort to be worth it. How to get started If you’ve got a game picked out, great! You may be wondering “what now?” In addition to stocking the games themselves, local game stores, and occasionally comic shops, have tons of great resources to get started. Maybe you still want to try out a game before fully committing, these shops often times will host community nights where dedicated players come together with complete newbies to run games. Staff at these shops also often have a wealth of information for new players, too. Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! View full article
  23. Nintendo went a bit Pokénuts last night when it announced not one, not two, but three new Pokémon titles headed for their flagship console. To clarify, these are supposedly not the materialization of the classic Pokémon experience for console that the company teased last year around E3. Instead, Nintendo aims to do something different. The Switch's first Pokémon is titled Pokémon Quest and it's actually available right now. The new adventure debuts on Switch and will be making its way to mobile platforms around the end of June. The new title brings players to Tumblecube Island, where of all the Pokémon are shaped like cubes. Basically, it looks similar to that popular Minecraft mod that added Pokémon to the creative crafting game. It's adorable and, while initially jarring, definitely something that looks like it could catch on with a wide audience. In Pokémon Quest, players exert indirect control over their animal companions as the ever-growing Poképack clears stage after stage, collecting new items and Pokémon along the way. Between stages, players can build up their base camp, train their Pokémon, and cook them delicious meals. Of course, Pokémon Quest is a free-to-play game, or a "free-to-start" game as Nintendo calls it. That means Nintendo has provided a number of items and packs that people can purchase. These range from $5-$18 apiece, and include items that allow players to cook more meals, new Pokémon, and a variety of Pokéballs - and, of course, more in-game currency. Pokémon Quest uses PM Tickets as its currency, which can be used to speed up different in-game tasks. Yeah, Pokémon Quest will make Nintendo a zillion dollars. The other two games Nintendo announced come in a pair. Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Pokémon: Lets' Go, Eevee! are based off of Pokémon Yellow, each featuring 151 Pokémon with a selection of Alolan versions for those 151. The Let's Go games will have interactions with Pokémon Go, meaning that players who catch Pokémon in Pokémon Go will be able to use them in Let's Go. That's a pretty fantastic idea. The Let's Go games will also use the capture mechanic from Pokémon Go, a notion that might prove more divisive. Players will be able to use the Switch controllers to toss out Pokéballs at different angles to capture new Pokémon. To further deepen the fantasy of actually catching them all, players will be able to buy the Pokéball Plus, a standalone accessory that takes the place of the Joy-Con. The Pokéball Plus has a joystick to allow it to take on the role of a Joy-Con while also having built in lights and sounds specific to Let's Go. It can also work with Pokémon Go in place of the Pokéball accessory that acts as a pedometer and capture aid for the mobile title. However, with a battery life of three hours, it might not be ideal for long rambles in the outdoors. In a neat twist to the Pokémon formula, Let's Go will offer a co-op experience that allows two players to catch Pokémon together and bring their Pokémon Go captures into the same world. This could be a big deal for players who have only ever experienced Pokémon solo or in competition. Let's Go retains some of the features of Pokémon Go and expands on others. That doesn't mean more traditional parts of the franchise are falling by the wayside. The Switch exclusives will feature trainer battles, gyms, a story, and many of the other classic Pokémon staples. Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Pokémon: Lets' Go, Eevee! (along with the Pokéball Plus) will release later this year on November 16 for the Nintendo Switch.
  24. Nintendo went a bit Pokénuts last night when it announced not one, not two, but three new Pokémon titles headed for their flagship console. To clarify, these are supposedly not the materialization of the classic Pokémon experience for console that the company teased last year around E3. Instead, Nintendo aims to do something different. The Switch's first Pokémon is titled Pokémon Quest and it's actually available right now. The new adventure debuts on Switch and will be making its way to mobile platforms around the end of June. The new title brings players to Tumblecube Island, where of all the Pokémon are shaped like cubes. Basically, it looks similar to that popular Minecraft mod that added Pokémon to the creative crafting game. It's adorable and, while initially jarring, definitely something that looks like it could catch on with a wide audience. In Pokémon Quest, players exert indirect control over their animal companions as the ever-growing Poképack clears stage after stage, collecting new items and Pokémon along the way. Between stages, players can build up their base camp, train their Pokémon, and cook them delicious meals. Of course, Pokémon Quest is a free-to-play game, or a "free-to-start" game as Nintendo calls it. That means Nintendo has provided a number of items and packs that people can purchase. These range from $5-$18 apiece, and include items that allow players to cook more meals, new Pokémon, and a variety of Pokéballs - and, of course, more in-game currency. Pokémon Quest uses PM Tickets as its currency, which can be used to speed up different in-game tasks. Yeah, Pokémon Quest will make Nintendo a zillion dollars. The other two games Nintendo announced come in a pair. Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Pokémon: Lets' Go, Eevee! are based off of Pokémon Yellow, each featuring 151 Pokémon with a selection of Alolan versions for those 151. The Let's Go games will have interactions with Pokémon Go, meaning that players who catch Pokémon in Pokémon Go will be able to use them in Let's Go. That's a pretty fantastic idea. The Let's Go games will also use the capture mechanic from Pokémon Go, a notion that might prove more divisive. Players will be able to use the Switch controllers to toss out Pokéballs at different angles to capture new Pokémon. To further deepen the fantasy of actually catching them all, players will be able to buy the Pokéball Plus, a standalone accessory that takes the place of the Joy-Con. The Pokéball Plus has a joystick to allow it to take on the role of a Joy-Con while also having built in lights and sounds specific to Let's Go. It can also work with Pokémon Go in place of the Pokéball accessory that acts as a pedometer and capture aid for the mobile title. However, with a battery life of three hours, it might not be ideal for long rambles in the outdoors. In a neat twist to the Pokémon formula, Let's Go will offer a co-op experience that allows two players to catch Pokémon together and bring their Pokémon Go captures into the same world. This could be a big deal for players who have only ever experienced Pokémon solo or in competition. Let's Go retains some of the features of Pokémon Go and expands on others. That doesn't mean more traditional parts of the franchise are falling by the wayside. The Switch exclusives will feature trainer battles, gyms, a story, and many of the other classic Pokémon staples. Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Pokémon: Lets' Go, Eevee! (along with the Pokéball Plus) will release later this year on November 16 for the Nintendo Switch. View full article
  25. You really have to listen to this. Today, Josef Kenny released his own take on The Beatles' song "Eleanor Rigby." This new version combined the classic track with the battle music from Pokémon and.... Honestly, it works so well that it's kind of astonishing. Josef Kenny works as an independent musician focusing on mixing, production, and remixing. Gaming and music are clearly near and dear to his heart with gaming related and inspired music posted to his Soundcloud as far back as five years ago. It's a pretty fantastic remix. View full article
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