Super Mario 64 in 2014 - Playing without nostalgia

For Christmas gatherings my family always played Golden Eye 007. My older cousin set up the Nintendo 64 on a giant television shoved into the living room corner. When ready, my dad and older cousins alternated between chair and floor seats as they ran circles in each map. They never let me play. I was the five-year-old little cousin not allowed to play with the grown-ups. Those are my memories of the N64. I never owned one. I didn't play Golden Eye 007 split-screen and I didn't play Super Mario 64 with the trident controller.

I was only three-year-old when Super Mario 64 released alongside the console, yet most of my friends of the same age all retell memories of "the greatest Mario game." When I asked my dad of why he never bought me an N64, he quickly responds with, "You never asked for one." Only in high school did I start reading video game news and playing more games than available time. I spent most of my childhood away from home, staying hours past the final school bell playing basketball until sunset. I never asked for a N64 because I didn't want one.

DOTA 2 - My best and worst heroes

When I played League of Legends I never found a Champion I wanted to use. The weekly rotation of Champions never gave enough time to learn a single character, yet the rotation let me try each Champion. This past summer I decided to try DOTA 2. I haven't stopped playing since.

My time with League of Legends simplified the learning curve for other MOBAs like DOTA 2, yet something about the roster of Heroes made sense to me. And while I still miserably lose matches even today, I know most characters - and my best and worst. Both as an exercise to recognize my strengths and an admittance of my failures with certain Heroes, I've compiled a list of successful Heroes and Heroes I should always avoid.

 

Good Ahead, Choose Them

Earthshaker

I don't remember how I decided to play Earthshaker, but his full arsenal of stuns and low item dependence helped me setup kills for my team. Once I acquire a Blink Dagger and warp into the middle of teams to dunk my Echo Slam, I watch as my team clean up the remaining health of enemy Heroes. Earthshaker's usefulness somewhat drops off in longer matches, but my friends never complain when I select my favourite Hero.

E3 2013: A pre-show assessment

As E3 quickly approaches, it brings the near complete picture of the next generation of games. But to proclaim the official entrance into the next generation doesn't feel entirely fair considering the release of the Wii U. Even with stronger hardware, new games and a newly design controller, many people, including myself, choose to forget that Nintendo's console even exists. The slow trickle of information and void of Wii U games doesn't help either.

So as many Wii U owners sit in limbo waiting for the complete reveal of the Xbox One and PS4 launch line-ups, I wonder how Nintendo can even compete new hardware and any the opposing games capable of diverting attention away from the next Zelda.

With E3 only a few days away, I want to evaluate the current state of each console and outline what each company needs to do for the most successful E3.

Review: Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon - Housing secrets

I always wanted a sequel to Luigi's Mansion, I just can't remember why.

In December of 2001 when my father bought me a GameCube a few months before my ninth birthday, any game even close to Mario would fulfill all of my Christmas and birthday wishes. If I try to remember what I loved about Luigi's Mansion, only images of the final, ruthless boss fight and fake doors swinging open and slamming Luigi against the wall come to mind. For many new people, Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon will begin their experience with Luigi's ghost busting trips. For the veterans, Dark Moon will bring forth only facades of decade old memories.

The simple puzzles and forgiving difficulty of Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon won't sustain long durations of play, but the cleverly hidden secrets and an abundance of cheerful moments makes the exploration of each mansion a worthwhile experience for all.

Cheap Ass Games - An Interview with CheapyD

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David Abrams (CheapyD) manages CheapAssGamer.com - a website dedicated to tracking video game sales and prices - from his home in Tokyo, Japan. Tens of thousands of people visit Cheap Ass Gamer each day to share the latest deals available from internet and regional retailers. CheapyD also records his weekly podcast -the CAGcast- over Skype with his friends, Wombat and Shipwreck for thousands of listeners who, not only value their opinion of games, but enjoy listening to the stories they share.

               
After acquiring my history degree in Rochester, New York, I worked for a corporate video conferencing company called ADCOM who set up video conferences between people in different locations. In Canada, a more successful company with the same name sued us out of existence. My employers offered me a job for a formal position, but I quit after my 3 years with them.

I then found a job in commercial real-estate selling office buildings in Manhattan, which no one owned the exclusive rights to. Anyone could sell the office space and I would only receive pay through commission. "I hated it. I was making cold calls all day just bothering people. I'm kind of shy and I just wanted to leave people alone." I quit after a year and with no job lined up.

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