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Apple requires devs to disclose loot box odds, Rami Ismail on teaching the language of gaming, Writing on Games on the story of Metal Gear Soild 5, Giant Bomb begins their top 10 lists, Squadron 42 trailer and gameplay footage, Cloth Map looks into game development in Brazil, Lucy O'Brien interviews female developers on working in the game industry and the need for schools to better represent the types of jobs available in it, the original cut and origins of Leeroy Jenkins, video games and the power of winter, interview with the Vermintide developers, new gameplay of MechWarrior 5, Extra Credits on Hidden Game Mechanics, Style Over Substance Cuphead's Animation, and more.

 

Gaming News (Announcements, previews, release dates, interviews and writing on upcoming games, DLC and game updates, company and developer news, country news, tech, mods)

 

"We own our future" say the Vermintide devs - here's what that means for the sequel

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Teased in August, revealed in October, and scheduled for early next year, the hype for Warhammer: Vermintide II is steadily building. Like a tenderly reared Hell Pit Abomination, the original game swelled to become one of the biggest indie hits of recent years, with a tremendous two million sales to date. That's according to Martin Wahlund, the co-founder and CEO of developers Fatshark.

 

Walking Around MechWarrior 5's Massive Dropship Hangar

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We take a closer look at the hangar in MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries.

10 Minutes of MechWarrior 5 Gameplay: ShadowHawk Mech on a Forest Planet

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We go hands-on with MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries, fighting as its fast ShadowHawk mech.

15 Minutes of MechWarrior 5 Gameplay: Atlas Mech on a Mars-Like Planet

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We go hands-on with MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries, fighting as its massive Atlas mech.

 

Persona 5 And Persona 3 Dancing Will Have A New Mode With Character Interactions

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Following the look at Persona 5: Dancing Star Night and Persona 3: Dancing Moon Night’s latest trailers and details, Atlus had more to reveal in this week’s issue of Famitsu magazine.

 

Risk Of Rain 2's Developers Discuss The Game's Shift To 3D

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Hopoo Games gave the world its first good look at their upcoming game last spring in a post over at the studio’s development blog. Surprisingly, the sequel broke with the original Risk of Rain’s 2D side-scrolling layout and the developers have explained why in a recent interview.

 

Frozen Synapse 2 strategizes into 2018, leaving us 15 minutes of fresh gameplay footage

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In the world of game design, ambition comes at a cost, and there are few sequels looking more ambitious than Frozen Synapse 2, taking the small-scale, play-by-email style tactical skirmishes of the original and expanding them to a city-wide game of cyberpunk conquest, diplomacy and backstabbing.

 

Psychonauts 2 delayed past 2018

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Psychonauts 2 won’t make its previously scheduled release window of 2018, developer Double Fine Productions confirmed today in an update. Expect Raz’s next adventure in 2019 at the earliest.

 

Manipulate George Washington in The Council, an episodic adventure game coming next year

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It's the 18th century. You're Louis de Richet, a secret society member who has been invited to a private party by Lord Mortimer on an island just off the coast of England. Also at this party is Napoleon Bonaparte, George Washington, and more members of the social and political elite. Of course, as with any private party for the 18th century elite: it all turns into a murder mystery, which you must solve.

 

The Church in the Darkness: 10 Minutes of Cult-Infiltrating Stealth Gameplay - IGN First

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Writer/director Richard Rouse walks you through two different play styles of The Church in the Darkness' unique action-infiltration gameplay, set in the 1970s.

 

Brainwash bad guys and build a conspiracy wall in this secret agent strategy game

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Phantom Doctrine literally has a corkboard with yarn-connected photos and notes that you use to complete the game.

 

A new Squadron 42 trailer shows off Mark Hamill being a dick

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If you’ve seen The Last Jedi and you want a little more Luke Skywalker in your life...well, you’re probably going to have to wait until Episode IX, sorry. Courtesy of a new video from Squadron 42, however, we can offer you the next best thing - Mark Hamill messing around in space. Which is more or less the same as a decent chunk of Empire, at the very least.

Watch an hour of Squadron 42 gameplay, complete with dogfights and spacewalking

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You can now watch an hour of gameplay from Squadron 42, the singe-player section of massive space sim Star Citizen.

 

Old-school platformer Freedom Planet 2 gets updated demo and new gameplay video

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Follow up to much-loved 2014 Sonic-inspired game.

 

Shenmue III ‘Then, Now, and Tomorrow’ Yu Suzuki video interview

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The official Shenmue III holiday 2017 greeting card was also released

 

Atlus’ Project Re Fantasy teasers suggest a bizarre RPG in the making

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Please enjoy five minutes of a knight eating chicken

 

Railway Empire is a mostly satisfying management sim

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It captures the complexity behind building a railway.

 

Civilization 6 comes to iPad, full game to cost $60

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Get it at half price for two weeks

 

Hand of Fate 2 adds Dealer companion and outlines 2018 expansion plans

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The Dealer will offer long-range combat support alongside his trademark quips.

 

The Resistance DLC for Call of Duty: WW2 comes to PC in February

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The first DLC pack for Call of Duty WW2 will release for PC in February. The Resistance DLC adds three new multiplayer maps, a new War Mode mission, and a new Zombies chapter.

 

Star Trek: Bridge Crew no longer requires VR

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Star Trek: Bridge Crew is a delightful way for you and three friends to live out your nerdiest fantasies, taking command of a Federation starship and taking on the individual roles of officers on the bridge. The only problem is that your group of four had to shell out the money necessary to all own VR headsets. But that’s a problem no longer, because Bridge Crew isn’t VR-exclusive anymore.

 

Level-5 planning major 20th anniversary title, Team Ninja wants to make Nioh even bigger, and more developer tidbits

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Tidbits from Dengeki PlayStation's "Creator Interviews" feature.

 

Platinum’s Transformers and Korra games disappear from digital stores

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An Activision holiday tradition

 

Developers now have to disclose loot box odds on iOS

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Apple recently made a major revision to their app store review guidelines, and it’s one that has some pretty strong implications for the industry at large. App developers will now be required to display the odds for item drops on any randomized, loot box-style purchase.

 

Gaming disorder is going to be named a mental health condition for the first time

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Gaming disorder is soon to be classified as a mental health condition for the very first time, the New Scientist reports.

 

Hacker-for-hire pleads guilty to shutting down company websites

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Buchta, 20, admitted in his plea agreement with prosecutors to being a founding member of the prolific hacker groups Lizard Squad and PoodleCorp, which charged a $20 fee to target anyone for online harassment.

 

Microsoft Moves to End Secrecy in Sexual Harassment Claims

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SEATTLE — The wave of sexual harassment claims has toppled powerful men in entertainment, media and politics. Now, it is also creating permanent changes in workplace policy at one giant technology company.

 

Australian courts say Valve must pay a $3 million fine for "misleading" consumers

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The Australian Federal Court has thrown out two appeals by Valve in a case between the company and the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC). The dismissal of the two appeals means that Valve will have to pay a $3 million penalty.

 

A DMCA exemption could bring 'dead' games back to life

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The U.S. Copyright Office will consider whether to update DMCA rules to make an exemption for abandoned online games. If an exemption were offered, it would allow certain organisations to provide copies of abandoned online servers, potentially allowing ‘dead’ games a second lease of life.

 

The best two Witcher 3 mods overhaul the game in radically different ways

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We talk to the modders behind Ghost Mode and The Witcher 3 Enhanced editions about their ambitious overhauls.

 

There's A New Mod Designed To Make Smash Bros. 4 Play Just Like Melee

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A new mod promising to make Super Smash Bros. 4 play more like Super Smash Bros. Melee now has a playable beta, as well as a new trailer.

 

Esports News

 

StarLadder Announces $100,000 PUBG Invitational

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While still in early access mode, PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS’ professional scene started to flourish.

 

Catherine Players Explain What The Remake Means For Its Competitive Scene

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Earlier this week, Atlus announced a remake of its cult-classic puzzle game Catherine. It was an exciting moment for fans of the stylish adult thriller. But amid the list of new features, there was one bullet point that meant the world to a small section of the community: the competitive Catherine crowd.

 

Content I found interesting this week (interviews, recommendations, think pieces, history, music, culture, design, art, documentaries, criticism, etc)

 

The Boy in the Well

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This piece was originally written for/commissioned by A Profound Waste of Time. Spoilers for the original Life is Strange.

 

WOMEN IN VIDEO GAME DEVELOPMENT IN 2017: A SNAPSHOT

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BY LUCY O'BRIEN Several months ago, I asked 55 female and non-binary game development professionals from around the globe about the moment the light bulb switched on for them, the moment they thought video games are for me. Each answer was unique, “I would rent Diddy Kong Racing all the time from Blockbuster or Movie Gallery to the point that my dad had to buy it for me,” said one. “I starting typing in programs from magazines on my dad’s ZX81, then I begged my parents to buy my brother and I an Amstrad CPC 464 with a tape drive when I was 8,” said another. Or, as one simply put it, “Fable 2.”

 

The Makers Of 'Leeroy Jenkins' Didn't Think Anyone Would Believe It Was Real

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“We didn’t think anyone would believe it was real, we thought it was so obviously satire,” said Ben “Anfrony” Vinson in an e-mail, “but we were wrong.”

 

A day in the life of an independent video game store

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Places like this are too few and far between. Step into Console Connections in Shildon, County Durham, and it's like walking into an Aladdin's cave of games. Boxes reach up to the ceiling along every wall, and seemingly every console from the past four decades is represented in some way; from the PS4 display by the door to a boxed Amstrad GX4000 sitting proudly on the counter. Why can't all game stores be like this?

 

Video games and the power of winter

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Every season has its own distinct landscape look, feel and characteristics. This has permeated into game design incredibly pleasingly. It is easy to think of a video game setting bathed in the bright light of summer or covered by the golden palette of autumn. However, no season is perhaps as striking, atmospheric and powerful as winter.

 

How the legal battle around loot boxes will change video games forever

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Digging in to one of 2017’s biggest gaming controversies

 

Dishonored's Billie Lurk Was the Spirit of Justice in 2017

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The first two games are helmed either by royalty or someone directly adjacent to it. Corvo, despite humble roots, is tightly intertwined with nobility by the time we are introduced to him. Emily, a princess, inherits the throne. As a result, their relative positions influence their outlook on the rest of the world. As Duncan Fyfe wrote for Waypoint last year: “What Emily and Corvo seem to forget along with their powers and abilities is the fact that they've been in power for decades. What's so galling, when they gape at the state of Karnaca, isn't that those problems happened on their watch, but that they seem to be learning about them for the first time.”

 

Best of 2017: Gamasutra's top games, devs, events and trends

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The year is almost over, and so the staff and contributors who call Gamasutra home have been taking time to look back and reflect on what 2017 meant to us and the game industry as a whole.

 

The Year In Video Game Paintings, 2017

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Another year, another crop of video game paintings doing their best to class up the place.

 

Vinny Caravella's Top 10 Games of 2017

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If you're a video game and you were released in 2017 the math says you were probably pretty decent.

Chad and Jared Moldenhauer's Top 10 Games of 2017

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Chad and Jared Moldenhauer are the co-founders of Studio MDHR, the team behind Cuphead. They are also brothers, but don't let the government know that.

Ed Boon's Top 10 Games of 2017

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The co-creator of Mortal Kombat executes a FRIENDSHIP on his ten favorite games of the year.

Greg Miller's Top 10 Games of 2017

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Kinda Funny's buffalo wing enthusiast shares his favorite games of the year. And they aren't all on Vita!

Alex Zandra's Top 10 Games of 2017

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Designer, author, and all-around great friend Alex Zandra is back with another list of her favourite video games of the year.

Chris Tilton's Top 10 Games of 2017

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Composer Chris Tilton breaks down his top 10 categories of the year, and the 10 games that take home first place in each of them.

Nina Freeman's Top 10 Games of 2017

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The creator of Cibele and how do you Do It? explores spaces both otherworldly and highly personal in her top 10 games of the year.

Steve Gaynor's Top 11 Games of 2017

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Cats! Sex! And Nazis! That's what's on Steve Gaynor's top 11 gaaaaaaaames!

Ben Pack's Top 10 Games of 2017

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Ben Pack has had a very complicated relationship with videos this year. He has come to the conclusion recently that they might be good.

Jeff Bakalar's Top 10 Games of 2017

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It's time for another FAAAAAANTASTIC top 10 list from CNET editor and Giant Beastcast stalwart Jeff Bakalar.

Mary Kish's Top 10 Games of 2017

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On this day, the merriest of Kishmases, please celebrate by checking out Mary's top 10 games of 2017.

Will Smith's Top 7 Games of 2017

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Does Will Smith pick Battlegrounds as his number Battlegrounds Battlegrounds? You'll have to Battlegrounds this Battlegrounds to Battlegrounds.

Jan Ochoa's Top 10 Games of 2017

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Games were definitely the silver lining of the dreary cloud that was 2017.

Pat Baer's Top 10 Games of 2017

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We're here in the Baer Caev to find out Pat Baer's top 10 games of 2017!

No Goblin's Top 10 Games of 2017

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Dan and Panzer are back to recap the year's best games, best goofs, and best chickens.

Shawn Alexander Allen's Top 10 Games of 2017

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Treachery in Beatdown City's Shawn Allen punches, kicks, and clotheslines his way through the games of 2017 that showed the most fighting spirit.

Rich Gallup's Top Mobile Games of 2017

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Between Star Trek and his kids, Disruptor Beam's Rich Gallup has somehow managed to squeeze in these mobile treats.

Erica June Lahaie's Top 10 Soundtracks of 2017

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Artist Erica June Lahaie gives a passionate breakdown of her favorite soundtracks of the year.

Ian Dallas' Top 5 Games of 2017

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In a busy year, the creative director behind What Remains of Edith Finch found a little time for some of the year's best games.

Rami Ismail's Top 10 Games of 2017

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In between traveling the world and getting married, Rami Ismail still found time for some of 2017's best games.

Jack Gallagher's Top 10 Games of 2017

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The umbrella-toting grapplesman graces us with his most gentlemanly games of the year.

Dan Ryckert's Top 10 Games of 2017

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2017 was a great year for Dan Ryckert. He moved to New York, got married, got a dog, and got to play these ten games.

 

Jason Schreier's Top 10 Games Of 2017

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This year, I published a book, fell in love with a brand new hardware system, and played a ton of video games. Here are the best ten.

Luke's Top 10 Games Of 2017

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It’s absolutely insane to think that 2017 was so good to me that The Legend Of Zelda: Breath Of The Wild, a game made in close consultation with my wildest fantasies, was somehow still not my favourite game for the year.

Eric's Top 10 Games Of 2017

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In 2017, I played a lot of games, but only 10 could make the cut for this blog. Culling the herd to just 10 was heartbreaking and required intense soul-searching. In no particular order, the best games I played in 2017:

Fahey's Top 10 Games Of 2017

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Before you say I have a type, five of my top ten games of 2017 do not contain androids, virtual pop stars or cat girls. No wait, four. Still a large percentage.

 

SIMONE'S Top 5 Games of 2017!

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Join Simone as she goes on a physical and emotional journey to discover her top five favorite games of 2017.

 

Made in Brazil: A Game Development Snapshot

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Brazil's 200 million people love video games, so why haven’t we heard more about games FROM Brazil?
Support Cloth Map on Patreon! https://patreon.com/clothmap

 

Hidden Game Mechanics: Design for the Human Psyche - Extra Credits

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Sometimes games trick us into having a more engaging experience by simulating near-death escapes and gently massaging the odds to be kind to us. These hidden game mechanics play into the expectations of our human psyche to give us the results we expect.

 

Going Back to MGSV: The Phantom Pain (Part 2: Story)

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TIMESTAMPS

0:00 - Intro
3:05 - Structure, or: The Problem With Tapes
11:45 - Chapter 2
13:28 - Disconnection
17:20 - Character Problems
24:19 - Skull Face
27:26 - Visual Storytelling
28:50 - The Twist
36:28 - Cut Content
39:24 - Closing Thoughts: Understanding

In part 2 of my critique of Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, I take a look at perhaps the most important element of any Metal Gear game - its story. In MGSV, however, thanks to deep structural issues, plot holes, poor characterisation and a twist that tells us very little we didn't already know, The Phantom Pain serves as the least interesting way to tell a story that didn't need to be told.

 

Style Over Substance // Cuphead's Animation

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What is it about Cuphead's animation?

You can follow and support:
https://twitter.com/Rootayable
https://www.patreon.com/DanRoot

 

The Painted World of Ariamis

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In this essay, I want to make the case for why this seasonal alternate reality is the perfect small scale replica of Dark Souls - demonstrating all its key tenants in a vertical slice.

 

Saving the History of Video Games

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Waypoint meets Frank Cifaldi, the founder of the Video Game History Foundation. The history of video games are in danger of disappearing. Not just the games itself, but the packaging, the culture, and the experience of the players. We join Frank on his quest to save these relics.

 

Analysis: Tekken - The Difference Between 2D and 3D

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Support on Patreon: http://bit.ly/2rfySih

 

Things I found entertaining throughout the week relating to the game industry

 

We brewed Kaedwenian Stout from The Witcher 3 (featuring the voice of Geralt!)

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In this very special episode of Chiodini's Kitchen, Johnny brews an honest to goodness beer from The Witcher 3 - many thanks to Hackney Brewery and Doug Cockle!

 

Things I Missed From Previous Weeks

 

Mom, 'Final Fantasy' and the Language of Gaming

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A year spent gaming with mom

 

How a counterfeit NES console opened up the Russian games market

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Back in the 90s, if you had mentioned the names Nintendo and Sega to a kid in America, Japan or Europe, their face would have likely lit up. They'd instantly know what these words represented; the colour and excitement of a game on the TV screen in their front room, and a sense of fun. But if you said these words to a child in Russia, they'd have looked at you blankly. These companies were not present in the region at the time. Say 'Dendy', however, and you'd invoke that same kind of magic.

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