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Roundup: Week of August 19, 2011

From Dust Screenshot

Really, who didn't see this coming? Ubisoft has a richly-deserved reputation for hating on the PC, and From Dust's DRM and terrible port can hardly be a surprise in light of the company's past actions. Ubisoft's upcoming Driver: San Francisco will probably also have this asinine DRM—Ubisoft claims it will not, but a similar claim was made for From Dust.

Consoleation: Four observations from July 2011 NPD report

Call of Duty: Black Ops Screenshot

Sensationalist headlines could have casual observers running for hills when it comes to how this year's sales numbers compare with last year. Don't fall for this. Let's keep in mind that the newer Xbox 360 models—the Xbox 360 Slim—really flew off of store shelves last July. We're now a year removed from that and now YOY numbers will bump into that success.

Video: Mega Man made better with the Portal Gun

Apparently everything is better with a Portal Gun.

GameCritics.com Podcast Episode 58: Gaming with Kids, Catherine

Gamer moms and gamer dads, assemble! The mighty Aaron of the GameEnthus Podcast joins us for a lengthy conversation about the joys and challenges of integrating our parenting and gaming lives. How did we introduce games to our kids? How do we deal with M-rated content? How do we decide when to take the controller away? We also offer some unique kid's game recommendations you won't find anywhere else. Plus: Our take on a game your kids should definitely NOT play: Catherine. With Chi Kong Lui, Brad Gallaway, Mike Bracken, Richard Naik, and Tim "The Master Thespian" Spaeth.

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Brief thoughts from July

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3DS Screenshot

It had to be done, given the below-expectations sales numbers and widespread hyperventilation over them. The DS also had a slow start, in terms of both sales and software, but that was before mobile phones were the most widespread handheld platform. As such, a price cut may not be enough to save the 3DS.

Video: A Link to the Past with a Portal gun

Perhaps Nintendo should take a hint from this little video. The Legend of Zelda is getting stale with all of its mainstays like boomerangs, hookshots and bows and arrows. With Skyward Sword on the horizon and exciting mainly the hardcore Zelda fan, Nintendo should consider something radical and new for the next sequel. A portal-making gun may be too futuristic, but how about a portal-making mirror? Oh wait...

NASCAR 2011: The Game Review

A Dart Without Feathers

NASCAR 2011: The Game Screenshot

HIGH Going from last to first over eight laps at Darlington.

LOW Getting spun out in turn four at Martinsville and receiving a pit road speeding penalty rather than a caution flag.

WTF Bump-drafting at Martinsville? Kevin Conway winning races? Jeff Burton taking the pole every week? What bizarre alternate universe is this?

Video: Is cosplay better in slow-motion?

This footage is courtesy of Angel James de Ocampo, cosplay cinematographer and conventioneer and was filmed at Japan Expo 2011 in Paris, France. Nice camera work. The biggest achievement has to be making people dressed as video game characters and walking around with plastic or paper weapons look cool while doing so. Well, maybe they can work on their fighting choreography though.

Consoleation: Capcom-edy of errors

Mega Man Legends 3 Screenshot

You know, I wouldn't have been as upset about the cancellation of Mega Man Legends 3 if it hadn't been for the PR ineptitude that followed the announcement. Let's face it: games get cancelled all the time. It's a by-product of a constantly changing industry and some games arguably have little chance of being successful on a grand scale. I know that Mega Man fans were looking forward to it, and a game in a familiar IP might have been something that the 3DS needed to help turn its fortunes around.

Western developers need religion

El Shaddai: Ascension of the Metatron Screenshot

I have been comfortably Agnostic for years, but my departure from Christianity hasn't erased the experience of having practiced it. I couldn't deny the influence my time within the church has had on me, and wouldn't; to do so would be to deny a fundamental piece of myself. From this perspective, I can't help but wonder if Western developers are doing themselves, gamers, and culture as a whole a disservice by continually minimizing and ignoring the role of religion in Western society.

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