Matt was supposed to talk about Assassin’s Creed: Revelations, and he does, but since he’s vacationing with family, he also had a chat with his wife and her siblings about the Playstation Move game Carnival Island. He briefly discusses a couple games that helped them pass the time while at the in-laws’ house too, as well as a few portable gems that helped him survive the lengthy road trip it took to get there.
Did you know Square Enix actually put out a Christmas album last year? It’s mostly (actually, entirely) the Square side of S-E (no holiday Dragon Quest arrangements in sight), but it’s still worth a listen just to experience some unusual and very jingly versions of a few classic Square tunes. Here are some of the more notable ones in case you’re tired of playing the same old Christmas Eve background music.
In honor of the holidays and as a huge THANK YOU to all of you, we’re going to be giving away a handful of download codes for various games over the next few days. Without our wonderful listeners and readers, giving us feedback and sharing VGH with their friends, we wouldn’t have had such a fantastic first year. We’ve got something from PSN, something from XBLA, something from WiiWare, and something from Steam, so there should be a little something for everyone.
D.J.’s finally made it through the first dungeon in the new Zelda and he’s here to tell you what he thinks of it so far. Or, at least that’s what he’s supposed to do.
Yep, believe it not there are a few developers out there that thought releasing a game 5 days before Christmas is a good idea! There are some heavy hitters coming out this week. First up is Running With Scissors’ magnum opus Postal 3. I’m glad RWS was able to push this game out the door as I have been dying to continue the saga of The Postal Dude. *Hopefully we’ll be treated with some stunning revelations regarding his past history with the shady organization known as FedSex. I know that when I was finished with Postal 2 I immediately began an online petition/campaign demanding Postal 3 be rushed out as quickly as possible as I just had to see the conclusion of The Postal Dude’s journey. It’s probably for the best that Running With Scissors ignored my email campaign, and instead spent the last 7 or so years polishing the title so we’re almost guaranteed to be treated to something special this time around. I simply cannot wait!
In this special Mini Hangover Episode, Paul and Matt spend the first half of the show playing PAYDAY: The Heist. We then take a quick break and give you our impressions immediately after finishing our first session with the game!
The End. …..or is it?!?
So, that’s a wrap on “season one” of Video Game Hangover. If you haven’t listened to it yet, head over and check out our year-end, 100% listener feedback special episode. That’s the last full-length episode for 2011, but we’ve got some special VGH minis coming over the next couple of weeks in the podcast feed just for our subscribers. Time permitting, we’ll be tossing up the occasional blog post here and there as well.
What are the VGH crew playing this weekend?
HO HO HO, I’m here to “WRAP UP” our gamer gift lists for this year. Some of these are things I mentioned when we all discussed our lists in Episode 33, but there’s some new stuff as well, so read on!
Games for Non-Gamers
Trying to get someone into gaming? Valve’s Portal 2 might be the key. It introduces a lengthy co-op mode with hours of the series’s trademark puzzles and wry humor. For new gamers, the first-person controls might be a bit of a shock, but reassure your non-gamer recipient that they can ease into them at their own pace, since there won’t be mobs of angry teenage boys shooting at them over Xbox Live.
This is it, our final show of 2011! In this week’s episode, The Whole Crew get together with drinks, and frame the entire show around your incredible feedback! Thank you so much for the support and we’ll see you in Season 2 in 2012!
When Q-Games announced in 2009 that their new PixelJunk title would be called PixelJunk Shooter, despite it playing more like Solar Jetman than Gradius, the 2D shooter fan in me cringed a little. Fast forward a couple years and Q-Games has spun elements from that game into a new title that plays more like a traditional shooter but, in a small twist of irony, is called PixelJunk SideScroller to set it apart from its less shootery siblings.
(Don’t worry. There will be time for questions at the end.)
Hot on the heels of the recent 3DS system software update, Nintendo has given their Club Nintendo website a bit of a makeover. In addition to a little visual sprucing up, they’ve also added a number of actual games to the list of rewards that club members can spend their coins on.
EXCLUSIVE! I wasn’t even on VGH33, so MY list of gift ideas for “obsessive gamers and pop-culture geeks” is ALL NEW CONTENT. Now that I’ve pumped you up with an unnecessarily high level of hype, let’s get to the list. Should any of these great gifts pique your interest, just follow the links to find out more.
Uncharted: The Fourth Labyrinth ($10-$15)
Books are a form of entertainment that are printed on paper. You simply open the cover and begin reading the words that are printed on the page. Pretty radical concept, I know. Don’t worry though, you can ease into books by reading ones that are based on games! Some of my favorite games are the ones that (I think) have a strong narrative, so it makes sense that they’d be prime candidates for novelization. I don’t know much about the Uncharted book or the author, but I love the story in the games, so why not? If Uncharted isn’t quite your cup of tea, I’ve also heard good things about Dead Space: Martyr and Bioshock: Rapture.
Hey hey everyone! It’s time for my list of awesome stuff to get
me your special loved ones for Christmas! Instead of attaching images of the products themselves, I decided to let YOU dear reader know exactly how I would react if you bought me each item. Let us commence!
5. Movies/TV: Lord of the Rings Extended Edition Bluray set ($50 USD): I’m a huge fan of the Lord of the Rings Trilogy, so when the release date for the totally expected Extended Blu-rays was announced I circled the date on my Calender. Of course once I saw the MSRP of the set, I proceeded to burn my calendar with some lighter fluid and matches. Thankfully, the price of the set has come down to a reasonable $50 and will even ship for free from Amazon. So who is going to do a back to back to back Lotr marathon this year? I sure am! Fly, you fools (to amazon.com to buy it)!
Editor’s note: If you’re reading this on Friday or during the day on Saturday, you’ve still got time to fulfill our biggest holiday wish: Send us your feedback for our year-end show!
VGH #33 introduced 2011’s Ultimate VGH Holiday Shopping Guide and as promised on the show, we’ll all be posting expanded versions of our wishlists here on the blog. Randy kicked it off today, so be sure to check out his list if you haven’t already. We’ll be posting the rest next week, so keep an eye out!
As promised on VGH33, here is my expanded list of gift ideas for the “obsessive gamers and pop-culture geeks” on your shopping list. Each is Linked to a site where you can find out more about the items and, in most cases, even buy them.
5. Alien Vault: The Definitive Story of Making the Film ($21)
This hardbound-and-slipcovered book traces the original Alien movie from concept to pop-culture phenomenon. There’s a ton of never-before-seen material inside, including Ridley Scott’s storyboards, H.R. Giger’s alien concept art, and Polaroids taken on the set. Nearly every sci-fi/horror hybrid over the last 30 years has borrowed elements from Alien; this gorgeous (and surprisingly cheap book) promises to show where it all began.
4. PlayStation Wireless Stereo Headset ($99)
Earlier this year, Sony introduced it’s own entry into the high-end gaming headset market and it’s been earning positive reviews ever since. It syncs up easily with your PS3 and provides 10+ hours of battery life with Dolby 7.1-quality sound. It includes a built in mic for multiplayer gaming but is also a great buy for folks who like to watch noisy action movies on Blu-ray.
3. Atari Arcade iPad Controller ($60 plus the cost of an iPad)
Atari’s Greatest Hits app ($10)
This is, essentially, a glorified dock for your iPad. The reason I included it here, though, is because it’s got a joystick and 4 clicky arcade buttons built in. Add the Atari’s Greatest Hits app and you’ve got access to 100 classic video games like Missile Command, Asteroids, Centipede, Tempest, etc. The downside? The controller only works with this one app, at least for now. If you’re shopping for a retro-gaming connoisseur, though, (and they already have an iPad) this would make an awesome gift.
2. CD Box Sets:
U2’s “Achtung Baby” Uber Edition ($440)
Smashing Pumpkins’ “Gish” and “Siamese Dream” ($25 each)
The Smiths’ “Complete” ($65)
Music is probably one of the only things in the world that I obsess over as much as gaming, which makes these new box sets from three of my favorite 80’s and 90’s band must-haves. U2’s set is ridiculous: it includes 6 CDs, 4 DVDs, 2 LPs, 5 7-inch singles, and a reproduction of Bono’s famous “Fly” sunglasses. The Pumpkins’ sets are more modestly priced and includes additional discs of outtakes, demos, and even some re-recorded B-sides. The Smiths’ set doesn’t provide much that’s new to hardcore fans but the packaging is brilliant: each album is reproduced on vinyl-style slipcovers with original artwork. Put it in your ears!
1. Nook Tablet ($250)
“Ready Player One” by Ernest Cline ($12)
“Extra Lives: Why Video Games Matter” by Tom Bissell ($12)
“All Your Base are Belong to Us: How Fifty Years of Video Games Conquered Pop Culture” by Harold Goldberg ($12)
Some very cool new books about gaming culture have come out this year and these three are definitely among the most interesting and creative. To take it one step further, I’d recommend reading them on Barnes and Noble’s new Nook Tablet, their rival to Amazon’s Kindle Fire and, in my experience, the superior product. The new Nook features a gorgeous 7″ HD screen, a super-fast dual-core processor, as well as Pandora, Netflix, Hulu Plus, and B&N’s massive e-book library. Gamers will also appreciate access to games via the Android Market. Plus, it’s a really sexy little device!
Stay tuned throughout next week for gift ideas from everyone on the Video Game Hangover Team. Happy Holidays!
Stuff this down your chimney! This week, we’ve assembled the Ultimate VGH Holiday Shopping Guide for the obsessive gamers and pop-culture geeks on your list. We’ve also got Viewer Mail, our weekly Hangovers, and we’ll wrap things up with Last Call.
We checked out the new Xbox 360 dashboard update yesterday, now take a look at the official Xbox Live app for iOS!
Come along as I give you a rundown of some of the new features! (Watch it on the YouTube page if you want to view in HD.)
It’s Mario Kart 7 week! The last big release of the year (provided you’re not devoting your life to Star Wars: The Old Republic in a couple weeks) zoomed onto shelves this Sunday, and I’ve been playing it a ton since then. You won’t find any odd mechanics like doubled-up drivers or motorcycles in this edition of Nintendo’s classic kart racer–they’ve opted to play it safe and give the 3DS a more traditional Kart. I’m totally fine with that.
Check out our very first video review!
Video Game Hangover host, Paul Sandhu reviews one of this years biggest games.
Does Skyrim hold up to the scrutiny of someone that hasn’t been a fan of past Bethesda games?
Intro and Outro credits music – Jeremy Soule – Skyrim Main Theme: Buy the Skyrim 4 disc soundtrack @ http://directsong.com
Also, Paul wants to hear from YOU about your adventures in Skyrim. Got an interesting Skyrim story? Let us know in the comments!
Thanks for watching!
For more info on how VGH approaches game reviews, please read our reviews philosophy.