Posts by Nadia Oxford

Wii 2: 10 Features We Want to See

Wii 2: 10 Features We Want to See

Rumor has it that a very special guest will be making an appearance at E3 2011, namely, the Wii’s successor. Call it the Wii 2; call it the Wii HD; call it “Fred” for all it matters: We won’t know anything about Nintendo’s new video game system until the company is good and ready to tell us all about it. But that just makes it extra-fun to put together a wish list. Here’s what we’d like to see in terms of features from the...

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Best Video Games 2011: Summer Preview

Best Video Games 2011: Summer Preview

The summer months can be downright chilly as far as video game sales are concerned. Much of the game-playing population goes away on holidays, and publishers use June, July and August to polish up their big Christmas releases. But that doesn’t mean that summer is a wholly barren time for gaming. In fact, some interesting stuff is coming our way in the hot months of 2011. Here’s what you can expect. Torchlight II (Mac/PC, July 2011) — An action...

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Five Tips for Social Game Success

Five Tips for Social Game Success

Social games are really popular (“How popular are they?”). They’re so popular that a report recently released by Parks Associates predicts that revenues from social games will quintuple by 2015. “Gaming on social networks has quickly become the most visible category of online games,” said Pietro Macchiarella, a Research Analyst with Parks Associates. “Right now more than 250 million people play games like Zynga’s CityVille...

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Music and Rhythm Gaming’s Top 10 Hits

Music and Rhythm Gaming’s Top 10 Hits

Attaching the name of a famous musician or band to a music game is a good way to draw people into buying the title. In fairness, it’s also a good way to repel people from the game if they’re not fans of the lady or gentleman on the box. Either way, an endorsement from a celebrity artist gets people talking about the game in question, and that’s pretty important if you want your titles to catch an eyeball or three in a busy market. Here are ten of...

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How To Make Licensed Games a Hit

How To Make Licensed Games a Hit

Let’s talk about video games based on TV shows and movies. (The audience groans. Somewhere far to the back, there is the echo of retching.) There, there. It’s not a pleasant topic; most video games based on television properties and movies are just awful. But that’s not always the case, and what’s more, that doesn’t have to be the case. If publishers followed a few rules, the quality of games based on licensed intellectual properties...

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Strange Days: World’s Weirdest Music Games

Strange Days: World’s Weirdest Music Games

We go through long stretches of pop culture history wherein music tends to sound manufactured, but occasionally something different catches our ears. The same can be said for video games based on music: We have the likes of Guitar Hero, which is a fun game to be sure, but as bizarre as damp moss. If you peer under the carpet of the music game genre, however, you’ll find some interesting alternatives brooding in the darkness. Here are seven of the weirdest...

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Music Games: What the Future Holds

Music Games: What the Future Holds

It’s difficult to get a solid consensus about the state of music games in the post-Guitar Hero era. Some people insist that music and rhythm games were around long before instrument-based video games became a phenomenon, and so they’ll continue to exist in some form. Others believe that music games have had it. Still more, particularly younger players, believe that the music gaming genre went to go live with a nice man on a farm. Really though, what...

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Music Gaming’s Hardest Rocking Inventions

Music Gaming’s Hardest Rocking Inventions

Music games have thrived (or at least survived) over the years for two reasons. One, they’re gosh darn fun. Two, interacting with music and rhythm games often requires a peripheral or a gesture that goes beyond the realm of what’s typical for standard video game experiences. For that reason, even sub-par music gaming outings have a way of sticking around our memory, even as lesser traditional games slip from our brain and fade away forever. Here are...

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How to Make Successful Social Games

How to Make Successful Social Games

Much to the dismay of many video game developers, there isn’t a magic formula for putting together a successful social game. So far, that hasn’t stopped designers from trying. Whereas some developers and publishers want a lucrative piece of the sweet social game action that’s overtaken Facebook and its kin, others genuinely want to branch off into new game development experiences. Ultimately, the desire to better the social games scene is what...

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Best Video Game Music: Songs and More

Best Video Game Music: Songs and More

Even the best video game music is still stereotyped as a bunch of bleeps and bloops; just watch a modern TV show that features at least one scene wherein the characters bash at controllers and are held in thrall by the sounds of Atari’s Pac-Man adaptation for the 2600. Gamers know better. Though a game can’t prop itself up on its soundtrack alone, a quality soundtrack is typically what imprints a title in the memories of its fans. Long-time gamers in...

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