Trailer Tuesdays: Some Nonromantic Faves (Just in Time for Valentine’s Day)

Howdy, readers!

As usual, our yearly Valentine’s pairing extravaganza will be showing up later today. To balance out that romance-filled spectacle, we’ve compiled a list of some of our favorite feminist movies that don’t have strong romantic messages for the not-so-romantically-inclined to curl up with on this fine Tuesday night.

(via videostereo)

This is how people watch movies, right? (via videostereo)

Hit the jump to find out what we picked, in no particular order!

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Games Should Be Accessible

Last weekend, Nintendo gave players a chance to demo their new game, Splatoon, on a global scale. As it was only available for a select three different hours over a two day period, it seemed to double-function as a hype building exercise and a stress-test on their online servers. That said, the game looks and feels amazing! I’d love to geek out about it for hours, but now isn’t the time. However, during the one hour I played, the game felt just slightly awkward: it was hard for me to aim. In most shooting-based games (first, or third person) camera control and aiming is controlled with a second analog stick on the controller. Splatoon, on the other hand, has the vertical aiming controlled by tilting the Wii U’s controller. (I didn’t know at the time that it could be changed!) Being fairly experienced in the “typical” method, this threw me off to a high degree, which got me wondering: does everyone new to games feel this way?

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Dom Reviews: Crypt Of the Necrodancer

Anyone who knows me knows that music and video games are two of my favorite things. They also know that I’m a sucker for female protagonists. So when I first heard about Crypt of the Necrodancer, a rhythm-based rougelike from Brace Yourself Games, I knew it was something I would be interested in. The game was in Early Access (a work in progress on Steam) for a while, but was completely released on April 23rd, so I figured this’d be a good time to give it a full review.

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Dom’s Favorite Games of 2014

2014 was an odd year for video games. Besides the gaming controversies (sigh) there was still much room for discussion. I’d like to say it was a great year for gaming as a medium due to the amount of discussion that came from the ups and the downs—despite the downs.

As it is the end of the year, as per tradition for many people, I want to present my personal games of the year list. But the following list doesn’t come easy, or without some apprehension. I completely stand by all of the games, but what good comes from lists like these in the first place? There is no doubt that games are fun, and all the people who put in hard work deserve recognition, but what does a simple “Best of” list accomplish? Without clear recommendations or reasoning, it’s hard to navigate how any one game can stand out. We found out these last couple years that “objective quality” of games isn’t as important to many as it used to be. The EA sports games and Grand Theft Autos are typically technical marvels—AAA titles (used to) signify a high level of polish, but that isn’t enough anymore. Conversely, games like Vlambeer’s entries, Crypt of the Necrodancer, Joylancer, and Twine games have shown that “interesting” games, well, interest people more than raw power or high fidelity graphics.

Basic, yet satisfying

Basic, yet satisfying

Additionally, the indie and AAA spaces seems to have completely different goals with their games. We can assume that they share, at least to some degree, the goal of making some money. But besides that, indie games seem to be shooting for creative, personal, narrative, or inventive concepts. AAA, on the other hand, seems to be staying comfortable with sequels or experiences that appeal to broad audiences or attaining a sort of Hollywood-of-Gaming. Neither of these goal sets are necessarily bad, but how can you compare those in a “Best Of” scope? With the broad range of genres in both spaces, I honestly don’t think you can. Even further, there are simply too many games coming out for one person to play them all fully, let alone the year they actually come out.

The answer to this, at least in my eyes, is to simply list a certain number of games that interest you in some particular scope. This list has to be completely subjective, just by the nature of the reasons listed above. With this mindset, a Games of the Year list is basically a list of recommendations/games that deserve honor based on one’s own preference set. Essentially, it’s just for fun. So, without any further philosophizing, here are five games that stood out to me for one reason or another, in no particular order. The only rule is that I had to play the game for the first time in 2014. I’ll list a “category” for why I chose the game, and a short description and justification.

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