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Generation why

Killzone: Shadow Fall Screenshot

With buzz building around "inevitable" new console announcements, I started thinking about it and came to a realization: For the first time in over thirty years of playing games, I'm honestly not excited about or even looking forward to the next generation of hardware.

Extra Credits: Religion in Games, Parts 1 & 2

The Extra Credits guys and gals certainly aren't afraid to tackle the big topics, even though it can take them a while to get to them. There aren't too many other topics surrounded with more landmines than that of "Religion in Games." And in fairness to crew, a lot was covered in the 12 minutes of video, but it feels like they only brushed the surface (no Christian-based games?). Hopefully, there is another, deeper discussion in the works that covers more of this subject matter.

Extra Credits: Balancing for Skill

This time Extra Credits talks about balancing the powers granted players in a game with the skill level necessary to execute said power. As with a lot of things Extra Credits covers, it's a concept that sounds a lot simpler than it actually is.

Extra Credits: Combining Genres

Extra Credits takes a brief look at combining genres. They give some pretty nice examples of it working (Puzzle Quest) and examples of it not being such a bright idea. Something to keep in mind as genre blending has been kicked into overdrive over the last few years.

Extra Credits: Counter Play

Extra Credits discusses the design concept of "Counter Play." The idea here is that in a multiplayer game, there should be interesting abilities or weapons that a player can use on another player that is also interesting for that player on whom the weapon or ability is being used. It's a seemingly simple idea that upon discussion appears to be something the industry hasn't wrapped its head around yet.

Extra Credits: "My Name Is Ozymandias..."

Points go to the Extra Credits crew (and basically anyone who talks about preserving old, landmark games), but a lot of this just seems "pie in the sky." As mentioned in the video, a lot of the technology that ran and interfaced with these early titles do not even exist any longer. The only solution would be an industry-wide investment, resurrecting arcades, building kiosks, museums, you name it, just so some kid can play Battletech or Space War as was originally intended. When you really think about it, it seems that these treasures are doomed to obscurity.

Extra Credits: Horror Protagonists

The Extra Credits guys give us a quick summary on the importance of the horror game protagonists. After recent comments pertaining to the reception of Resident Evil 6, the creators of Resident Evil really need to watch this video before they even think about returning the Resident Evil to its survival-horror roots. Such an about-face would require a level of expertise (and guts!) that Capcom hasn't demonstrated in over a a decade.

GameCritics.com Podcast Episode 86: Clearing games from our backlog, listener mail

On this episode, we talk about what we are FINALLY going to be clearing from our backlogs this year. We also answer some listener questions that you have always wanted to know, but didn't know you wanted to know. Join us for this informative episode of the GameCritics Podcast! With Chi Kong Lui, Brad Gallaway, Mike Bracken, Richard Naik and Dylan "I finally spelled everyone's name correctly" Collins.

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Please send feedback and mailbag questions to podcast (at) gamecritics (dot) com.

Backloggery 2013

Fire Emblem: Awakening Screenshot

It's not a backlog title, but I managed to get a copy of Fire Emblem: Awakening for Nintendo 3DS, and I've been putting some time into it… it's not title I was eagerly anticipating, but I needed a portable title and word of mouth from people that I trust was almost universally positive.

Consoleation: Irreconcilable differences

Beyond: Two Souls Screenshot

I've learned a few things after reading about what's happened during the DICE Summit and Awards event that's taken place this past week. The industry seems to be crying out desperately for maturity. David Cage (Heavy Rain, Beyond: Two Souls) says that games need to grow up. Warren Spector (Epic Mickey) says that games like Lollipop Chainsaw shouldn't be made. The industry wants more Journey and The Walking Dead experiences, as evidenced by these games winning 99.5% of the awards given out. The definition of "fun" is changing.

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